New Albany News

84 percent of third-graders pass latest reading test

By ThisWeek Community News  • 

The most recent results of the state's third-grade reading tests were released Dec. 13, showing that 84 percent of New Albany-Plain Local third-graders passed.

"While 84 percent of students meeting the third-grade reading benchmark in October is high, we need to achieve even higher levels of reading proficiency," Superintendent April Domine wrote in a letter to the community.

The figures released by the Ohio Department of Education show 394 third-graders took the test in October. Of those, 88 scored below the standard to be promoted to fourth grade, but 16 are not counted because they have limited English proficiency or are special-needs students who are on an individualized education plan, said district spokesman Patrick Gallaway.

That leaves 62 students who need to pass the test in the spring.

"According to our elementary leadership, there were not a lot of surprises with this data," Gallaway said. "Many of the students that did not meet the benchmark score of 392 have already been receiving services to help boost their reading skills."

Students will take the test again in April.

Before the second test is given, the district will continue to monitor student progress while providing intervention to those who need extra help, Gallaway said.

"One of the most important things to remember here is that this is data that reflects what a student is able to do at the end of the third-grade year," Gallaway said. "Having this data now and identifying students that need additional supports will help us as we move forward and prepare them for the future and fourth-grade readiness."

Eight of the 390 students -- about 2 percent -- failed the test last spring, according to a public-records request by WBNS-10TV.

Gallaway said seven of those students were exempt because of limited English proficiency or the individualized education plan.

"The additional student we were able to support and provide the necessary interventions and assistance to advance to fourth-grade reading," he said.

Ohio's Third-Grade Reading Guarantee was developed to "identify students behind in reading from kindergarten through third grade," according to the ODE website. "Schools will provide help and support to make sure students are on track for reading success by the end of third grade."

Students take the reading exam twice a year, in the fall and spring.

The state sets the score required for promotion into fourth grade, according to the ODE website.