Third Grade Guarantee


Ohio’s Third Grade Reading Guarantee directs schools to identify students in kindergarten through third grade, who are not on track based on grade level reading assessments. It ensures every struggling reader gets the support he or she needs to be able to learn and achieve.

How it Works: All students in grades K-3 must be given a reading assessment to identify them as on track or not on track for reading progress. For those students identified as not on track, schools must provide additional reading services or interventions. Students receiving additional reading interventions will be placed on a reading improvement plan that will address each student’s unique reading problems.

Advancing to Fourth Grade: Students must meet a minimum score on the state reading test to move on to fourth grade. In 2016-2017 the minimum score for advancement is 44 on the Ohio AIR Reading Test. This score must be attained either in the Fall or Spring administration of the state reading test.

If the student remains in the third grade, the school must provide a high-performing reading teacher and 90 minutes of reading instruction each school day. A student can still take fourth grade classes in all other subjects, if the student is ready. Schools can move students to the fourth grade in the middle of the year, if the student’s reading improves.

How it Helps: Studies and data have shown that students who remained in third grade and received intensive reading instruction, improved dramatically in overall school performance in years following.