Arizona Third Graders May Be Held Back

July 24, 2013

Arizona students entering third grade this year are the first group of kids that may be held back because of their reading level. More than 18,000 children are at risk of repeating third grade. For the past three years, the Arizona State Board of Education prepared schools across the state to make sure that children can read at an acceptable level at third grade. This fall, those preparations will be put to the test as the “Move On When Reading” law will take effect.

Cindy Daniels is with the state board. She said third grade is a critical time in assessing reading levels.

“It’s a very perfect timing because the minute they get into fourth grade, the curriculum timeline is not there for the education community or the teachers in fourth grade to be able to spend a lot of time teaching reading," said Daniels.

Arizona is one of 15 states that has passed reading-retention laws for third graders.

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