Hundreds of 3rd graders underperform in reading skills - WECT TV6-WECT.com:News, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

Hundreds of 3rd graders underperform in reading skills

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Hundreds of third graders across southeastern North Carolina did not demonstrate reading proficiency on third grade standards under the state's Read to Achieve initiative. Hundreds of third graders across southeastern North Carolina did not demonstrate reading proficiency on third grade standards under the state's Read to Achieve initiative.
SOUTHEASTERN, NC (WECT) -

Hundreds of third graders in southeastern North Carolina failed to meet grade level reading proficiency standards under the state's Read to Achieve initiative.

These numbers represent students retained for not demonstrating reading proficiency on third grade standards. This does not necessarily mean that these students won't move forward.


Students who are not proficient will be either retained in a third grade accelerated class, placed in a transition class with a retained level, or placed in a fourth grade accelerated class with a retained reading label.

Third grade students receive extra attention in North Carolina because of the state's Read to Achieve initiative, part of the Excellent Public Schools Act.

Under this law, students who are not reading at grade level by the end of third grade will receive special help so they can read well enough to handle fourth-grade work. Read to Achieve was initiated in 2012.

The Read to Achieve law gives third graders five paths to meet the promotion requirement in reading.

One of those paths has teachers giving as many as 36 mini-tests to some students. The child answers questions based on the passage must pass 70 percent of the time to meet promotion standards.

Earlier this year, the state Board of Education voted to allow school districts to use alternative assessments to determine if a third grader is reading at grade level.

Several students took part in Read to Achieve camps this summer. School officials said if students passed the summer program, those students would be able to move to the fourth grade.

A complete and official End of Grade test scores report will be released after the State Board Meeting on September 4.

For more information on Read to Achieve, please visit http://bit.ly/1reIiam.

Here's a breakdown of the number of students who did not meet reading standards in Spring 2014:

  • Brunswick County: 64 students, 6.8%
  • New Hanover County: 209 students, 10.2%
  • Whiteville City Schools: 28 students, 17.2%
  • Columbus County: 100 students; 22.2%
  • Pender County: 79 students, 12.3%
  • Bladen County: 35 students; 9.7%

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