AN ACT TO CLARIFY PROVISIONS OF THE READ TO ACHIEVE ACT AND SCHOOL PERFORMANCE GRADES AND TO EXPAND THE TESTING WINDOW FOR ONE YEAR.
The Senate committee substitute to the 1st edition deletes the provisions of the 1st edition and replaces it with AN ACT TO CLARIFY PROVISIONS OF THE READ TO ACHIEVE ACT AND SCHOOL PERFORMANCE GRADES AND TO EXPAND THE TESTING WINDOW FOR ONE YEAR.
Amends the definition of alternative assessment in GS 115C-83.3 to add that the State Board of Education (State Board) must (1) provide several valid and reliable alternative assessments to local school administrative units upon request, (2) approve valid and reliable alternative assessments submitted by local units, and (3) establish achievement level ranges for each approved alternative assessment. Requires the State Board to annually review all alternative assessments. Amends the definition of student reading portfolio to specify that it means a compilation of independently produced student work selected by the teacher, beginning during the first half of the school year, and signed by the teacher and principal. Adds that a single piece of evidence may show mastery of up to two standards. Changes the term "summer reading camp" to "reading camp." Requires that reading camps offer at least 72 hours of reading instruction; be taught by compensated, licensed teachers; and allow volunteer mentors to read with students at times other than the 72 hours of instruction. Requires that the 72 hours be provided over no less than three weeks for students in schools that are not year-round.
Amends GS 115C-83.5 to add the requirement that the kindergarten entry assessment yield both qualitative and quantitative data. Requires the data obtained from the assessment be used for specified databases and specified assessments.
Amends GS 115C-83.7(b) to provide that students exempt from mandatory retention in third grade for good cause are still eligible to participate in reading camps. Amends the good cause exemptions from the mandatory retention in third grade as follows. Allows an exemption for Limited English Proficient students with less than two school years (was, two years) of instruction in an English As a Second Language program. Expands the good cause exemptions for students with disabilities to include those whose individualized education program indicates (1) use of the NCEXTEND1 alternate assessment, (2) at least a two-school-year delay in educational performance, or (3) receipt of intensive reading interventions for at least two school years. Amends the exemption for students demonstrating reading proficiency appropriate for third grade on an alternative assessment to remove the provision concerning when the alternative assessment may be administered. Amends the exemption for students demonstrating reading proficiency appropriate for third grade through a student reading portfolio to remove the provision concerning when the portfolio may be submitted and require the portfolio and review process used by the local school administrative unit to be approved by the State Board.
Amends GS 115C-83.8 to encourage parents or guardians of students not demonstrating reading proficiency to enroll the student in a reading camp (was, required students to be enrolled). Requires local school administrative units to provide at least one opportunity for students not participating to demonstrate appropriate reading proficiency. Deletes the language concerning the promotion to fourth grade of students demonstrating reading proficiency on an alternative assessment or student reading portfolio after completing a summer reading camp. Adds the requirement that principals use specified provisions to grade and classify students demonstrating reading proficiency after the November 1 midyear promotion deadline.
Amends GS 115C-83.9 to add that the opportunities for teachers and principals to discuss with parents the notification that a student may be retained include information sessions.
Enacts new GS 115C-83.11 to allow parents or guardians of a student demonstrating reading proficiency appropriate for a third grader to enroll the student in a reading camp, for a fee, not to exceed $825.
Amends GS 115C-238.29F(d1) to amend the good cause exemptions for mandatory retention in third grade as follows. Allows an exemption for Limited English Proficient students with less than two school years (was, two years) of instruction in an English As a Second Language program. Expands the good cause exemptions for students with disabilities to include those whose individualized education program indicates (1) use of the NCEXTEND1 alternate assessment, (2) at least a two-school-year delay in educational performance, or (3) receipt of intensive reading interventions for at least two school years.
Requires the State Board to implement the developmental screening instrument in each school in a local school administrative unit enrolling kindergarten students, and according to the approved time line for administration in Section 3.9 of SL 2013-363. Requires additional components of the assessment to be fully implemented in each school in a local school administrative unit enrolling kindergarten students beginning with the 2016-17 school year.
Changes the title of Part 5 of Article 10A of GS Chapter 115C to Career and College Readiness.
Amends GS 115C-83.15(b) to require the State Board, in calculating the overall school achievement score earned by a school, to (1) use a composite approach to weigh the achievement elements based on the number of students measured and (2) proportionally adjust the scale to account for the absence of a school achievement element for award of scores to a school that does not have a measure of one of the school achievement elements annually assessed for the grades taught at that school.
Amends GS 115C-83.15(d) to require the State Board to use EVAAS to calculate the school performance score by adding the school achievement score and the school growth score. Requires that the school achievement score account for 80 percent and the school growth score account for 20 percent of the total. Provides that if a school has met expected growth and inclusion of the school's growth score reduces the school's performance score and grades, a school may choose to use the school achievement score solely to calculate the performance score and grade.
Provides that despite GS 115C-83.05(d), for the 2013-14 school year, for all schools, the total school performance score must be converted to a 100-point scale and used to determine a school performance grade based on the specified scale.
Allows local boards of education, for the 2014-15 school year only, to apply for waivers from the requirements in GS 115C-174.12(4), which limits the administration of final exams for year long courses to the final 10 instructional days of the school year and the final 5 instructional days of the semester for semester courses. The waiver application must be made by September 1, 2014, with notification decisions made by October 1, 2014.
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