- Associated Press - Monday, February 13, 2017

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - Some Oklahoma lawmakers are seeking to make a permanent exception to the state’s requirement for third-grade students to be reading proficient before moving on to the next grade.

Oklahoma’s Reading Sufficiency Act currently requires students in the third grade to score proficient on the state reading test in order to go into fourth grade, The Oklahoman (https://bit.ly/2kKU27D ) reported. A temporary exception was approved in 2014, allowing students to move on anyway if a committee of teachers and parents of the student approve promotion.

That exception is expiring in 2018, but Republican Rep. Katie Henke has introduced a bill to make it a permanent part of the law.

Gov. Mary Fallin didn’t return the newspaper’s request for comment, but said in 2014 that “it’s unfair” to send students to fourth grade without the reading skills necessary for success.

State Superintendent Joy Hofmeister supports keeping the parent-teacher committees.

“I think it’s very important that we always keep families engaged in high-stake decisions for their children,” she said.

Other exceptions for students to be promoted without a proficient score include if they’re a limited-English-proficient student or if they’re a student with disabilities. The former can be promoted if they’ve spent less than two years in an English language learner program. Students with disabilities would be subject to alternative assessments.

Educators said students who are retained for their reading score continue to be challenged in other subjects.

Last year, 72 percent of third-graders scored proficient on the state reading test.


Information from: The Oklahoman, https://www.newsok.com

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