Third Grade Reading Guarantee

Third Grade Reading OAA Alternative List

March 13, 2014

The OAA Alternative is a standardized assessment(s) for reading determined by the Ohio Department of Education for the Third Grade Reading Guarantee. It allows a third grade student to take and demonstrate an acceptable level of reading performance for promotion to the fourth grade. 

These tests will be at the districts' expense.  The level of achievement on these tests will be decided by the vendor and not ODE.  If a district is using or plans to use one of these instruments, the district must consult with the vendor as to what the score will be to equate with the 392 promotion score on the OAA.  These tests can be given at any time during the 3rd grade year, but the scores from these tests will not be used for reporting results on the LRC. Only the fall and spring OAA administrations will be reported on the LRC.  Districts will now be able to offer students four options for promotion to the 4th grade as determined by reading scores:  Fall OAA, Spring OAA, Alternate Assessment and Summer OAA.

A student may only be promoted to the fourth grade based on their acceptable level of performance on the alternative standardized assessment if they did not earn a 392 or higher on the fall or spring third grade reading Ohio Achievement Assessment (OAA).  


Sub.S.B.21 alters HB555 (effective March 22, 2013) 

     New ODE Interpretation Guideline Manual for Third Grade Reading Guarantee (8-22-13) Manual



Third Grade Reading Guarantee Update - June 2013 (June 6, 2013) August 14, 2013 The Ohio General Assembly made changes in Senate Bill 21 to the Reading Guarantee. The Ohio Department of Education will distribute detailed guidance on these changes by the end of this month, June 2013. This document outlines the major changes made.
Teachers Qualifications

Students entering third grade for the first time on or after July 1, 2013, who have been retained or are on a reading improvement plan must have a teacher with at least one year of teaching experience.
Additionally, the teacher must meet one of the following qualifications required in law:
•  Holds a reading endorsement on the teacher’s license;
•  Completed a master’s degree with a major in reading;
•  Has “above expected” rating for value added in reading instruction for the most recent, consecutive two school years;
•  Earned a passing score on a rigorous test of principles of scientifically research-based reading instruction to be qualified for the 2014-2015 school year;
•  New - Rated “most effective” for reading instruction consecutively for the most recent two years based on approved assessments of student growth;
•  New - Holds an alternative credential approved by the department or has successfully completed a department-approved training for reading instruction; or
•  New - Holds an educator license for teaching grades pre K-3 issued on or after July 1, 2017.

A teacher, other than the student’s teacher of record, may provide any service required by the guarantee. This teacher must have the qualification requirements and the approval of the teacher of record, who is the student’s classroom teacher, and the school principal.

The State Board of Education will develop reading competencies that will inform all reading credentials, training and teacher preparation by January 31, 2014.

Beginning July, 1, 2017, all educators licensed for grades pre-K-3 or 4-9 will pass a rigorous exam of reading instruction identified by the department.

     Please be advised:

     100% of ALL K-3 students must be tested in regards to the Third-Grade Reading Guarantee.  This mandate includes district students who may be at special education facilities. 

Diagnostic Assessments - August 14, 2013

NEW – The new ODE Diagnostic Assessments are available for the 2013-2014 school year.

The primary purpose of Ohio’s Diagnostic Assessments, which are aligned to Ohio’s New Learning Standards, is to provide a tool to check the progress of students toward meeting the standards. The Ohio Diagnostic Assessments were developed in two formats:

• Screener: Measures beginning year skills
• Full Measure: Measures end-of-year skills

Based on the Third Grade Reading Guarantee, districts/schools must administer a reading diagnostic assessment to all students in kindergarten through grade three by September 30 of each school year to meet the requirements of the Third Grade Reading Guarantee. ODE recommends using the reading Screener to meet the September 30th deadline.

Districts/schools must administer a mathematics diagnostic assessment to all students in grades one and two, and a writing diagnostic assessment to all students in grades one, two, and three at least once during the school year. All results must be reported in the EMIS end-of-year data collection.

Student results will be reported as on-track and not on-track. Please check at the end of each score sheet for the number of points to determine the on-track/not-on track result.

Please print the diagnostics you would like to administer in 2013-14. The Ohio Department of Education will not distribute diagnostic kits.

New Ohio Diagnostic Assessments (August 14, 2013)  

Diagnostic Test Options for the 2013-2014 School Year (August 14, 2013)   

State Board sets cut scores:  2012-2013 school year a cut score of 390 on the OAA English Language Arts test; 2013-2014 cut score moves to 392; and will reach proficiency of 400 points the following year.  Cut scores will determine which third graders maybe retained. (September 11, 2012)