Third Grading Reading Gate Leaves Room for Improvement

By ELISA MAYO,

As schools work to ensure students are reading up to the standards of the Mississippi Literacy Based Promotion Act (LBPA), they recently discovered even more work will be required of them.  This year, the bar for the "Third Grade Reading Gate" was pushed a little higher, moving closer to the proficiency level that the MS Department of Education hopes to attain for all third graders.  Third graders are currently assessed each year and their results determine whether or not they will be promoted to fourth grade.  Last year, final assessment results for many area schools showed 95% or slightly less of their students met the requirements of the LBPA.  This year proves to be a different story.  Following are 2019 assessment results for area third graders:

East Jasper School District, 72.1%

Enterprise School District, 85.7%

Lauderdale County School District, 80.3% (avg of multiple elementary schools)

Meridian School District, 51.1% (avg of multiple elementary schools)

Quitman School District, 62.4%

Wayne County School District, 73.8% (avg of multiple elementary schools)

Also, it is interesting to note that the top ten schools from 2018 were by-in-large not the same top ten schools for 2019.  Educators agree that proficient reading does not begin in third grade, but is a skill that is built from an early age.  Students not passing the assessment the first time are allowed multiple attempts to pass before the start of fourth grade.  

Go here to see the report released by MDE and other school results.  

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