Oklahoma Reading Suffiency Act
Oklahoma PTA Position Statement
Whereas, Oklahoma PTA believes that valid assessment does not consist of only a single test score, and that at no time should a single test be considered the sole determinant of a student’s academic or work future:
Therefore, Oklahoma PTA opposes the current “Reading Sufficiency Act” also known as “RSA” or “3rd grade retention law.”
Although we acknowledge that policy alternatives to social promotion and grade retention must be established, we do not support student retention based on a single test or sole criterion.
Oklahoma PTA believes parental involvement in decisions and in any process establishing policies is fundamental for student and school success. The “Reading Sufficiency Act” does not allow for parental input or a voice in their students’ education.
The “Reading Sufficiency Act” should be amended so that student assessment does not consist of a single test and includes parental involvement in the process.
High Stakes Testing
The decision to retain 3rd grade students rests with the results of a single test, only after a child scores unsatisfactory can good cause exemptions be requested. The law should be written with either/or language with more than one single test being the only determinate.
Parents should have a voice in the process of retaining their child. The law only addresses the parental voice in the form of notification. Parents should have more rights in the decision making process of retaining their child.
Good Cause Exemptions
A student must first take and score unsatisfactory on the state reading test to exercise an exemption. Students must wait for the state testing results to be delivered before they will know the results, which may put students in the position of not knowing what grade they will be in until late summer or possibly after the beginning of the school year.
Frequently Asked Questions
If the student has been retained for two years but still scores unsatisfactory they can move on to the fourth grade.
My child is on an IEP, are they exempt?
Students who take the OCCT and whose IEP states that they have received intensive remediation in reading for more than two years AND were previously retained qualify for an exemption. Students on an IEP and are assessed with the Oklahoma Alternative Assessment Program qualify for an exemption.
My child is in an ELL program, are they exempt?
Students who have been identified as ELL by a state approved screening tool and have had less than 2 academic years of instruction in an ELL program are exempt.
Can a parent appeal the decision to retain their child?
The decision to retain a child in third grade lies solely with the district/state after careful review of all criteria.