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Move On When Reading: Implementation of a Third Grade Retention Policy in Arizona

Author: Helios Education Foundation

January 5, 2017

At Helios Education Foundation, we believe that the early grades are critical to a child’s future academic success. We believe that strengthening early childhood systems to promote language acquisition and emergent literacy will enable more children to read at  grade  level by the end of third grade. This accomplishment in turn will improve success in both middle school and high school, ultimately better preparing each student for college and career.

Despite these beliefs we recognize that currently Arizona students as a whole are struggling to read at grade level by the end of third grade. Specifically, in 2014/15, only 40 percent of third grade students demonstrated proficiency in reading under the state’s assessment, AzMERIT. Similarly, on the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), the percentage of fourth grade students who performed at or above proficiency was 30 percent, 6 percentage points lower than the national average.

In an effort to understand more about the impact of Move On When Reading (MOWR), Helios commissioned a study to learn how Arizona’s MOWR legislation is being implemented in local education agencies. This brief, authored by several WestEd evaluators focuses on the first year of the implementation study.

Click here to access the full report.

  

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