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Did We Say “Required”?

April 29, 2013

Schools received word today that last week’s email insisting that they have summer school for the Reading Sufficiency Act Program – in spite of no funding for it – was a mistake:

Superintendents, Principals, and Reading Specialists,

There has been some inquiries to the law pertaining to the Summer Academy Reading Program.  After meeting with our Legal department, here is our decision:

CLARIFICATION:  No.  Summer Academy Reading Program is NOT required.  A school district may choose to offer a summer academy or other program designed to assist the student in attaining grade-level reading skills. Additionally, the Reading Sufficiency Act at 70 O.S. § 1210.508C, Section (N) requires schools to provide a program of “intensive interventions in reading” and “intensive instructional services and supports to remediate the identified areas of reading deficiency” to all third grade students identified at risk of retention (i.e. not reading on grade level).  A  summer reading academy program is one of the remediation strategies school districts may choose to provide to prevent the retention of a third grade student.  If a district does not choose to provide a summer academy reading program, the district must identify the other remediation strategy or strategies it intends to use in effort to prevent retention.

This never should have needed clarification. The law, as written, is abundantly clear. What’s hard to understand is why last week’s misinformation was sent to schools in the first place.

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