Louisiana adopts summer literacy policy to support third and fourth graders reading behind grade level
(BATON ROUGE, LA) - Louisiana is providing increased support to third and fourth-grade students who are behind on reading. The Louisiana Department of Education’s (LDOE) new summer literacy policy was approved by the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education (BESE) today. Third and fourth-grade students who score behind grade level on reading on an end-of-year screener will be provided 30 additional hours of focused literacy instruction during the summer by a teacher trained in the science of reading.
“I’m most concerned about this year’s third and fourth graders. Their foundational school years were disrupted more than any other cohort and we must be all-hands-on-deck for their recovery,” said State Superintendent Dr. Cade Brumley. “This measure focuses additional support for these students and is another step in the right direction.”
The policy is active for the 2022-23 and 2023-24 school years. This coincides with the time frame Louisiana school systems must utilize pandemic relief funds.
“Literacy is the basis for all learning, and as we work to create positive educational outcomes for Louisiana students, it is critical to provide struggling readers with a path to improvement,” said BESE District 4 Member Michael Melerine. “The summer literacy intervention policy approved by the Board today gives schools and parents another tool to boost reading skills, address learning loss, and help ensure that all of our students are on track for academic success.”
Third and fourth grade students will take an end-of-year literacy assessment. Students who score below grade-level will receive a minimum of 30 hours of focused literacy instruction during the summer. Students not on reading level and who do not participate in the summer program may be retained or, instead of retention, receive other means of support as determined by school officials and parents.
This is the latest action Louisiana is taking to combat the state’s literacy crisis and fundamentally shift how children are taught to read. In August, the LDOE’s literacy-focused accountability plan for grades K-2 was approved by BESE. It is Louisiana’s first accountability plan to measure success for students in kindergarten through second grade. The LDOE launched Louisiana Literacy in 2021. This comprehensive literacy strategy emphasizes the Science of Reading.