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Colorado READ Act
COVID-19 and Preschool Through 3rd Grade Education
CDE's Preschool Through 3rd Grade (P-3) Office gathered resources to help answer questions regarding the COVID-19 pandemic as it relates to our early learners in Preschool Through 3rd Grade. The Opening of School 2020-21 resources were prepared as a supplement to the CDE 20-21 School Year Toolkit. For P-3 Office guidance, click on the green button below. For READ Act-specific guidance, click on the blue button below.
About the Colorado READ Act
The Colorado Reading to Ensure Academic Development Act (Colorado READ Act) was passed by the Colorado legislature in 2012, giving the state the guiding philosophy, structure and resources to get children reading at grade level by the time they enter the fourth grade.
Please sign up for the READ Act communication list in order to stay informed of changes and updates related to SB19-199, READ Act Implementation Measures. CDE will announce ways to participate and provide your feedback throughout the implementation process.
After six years of implementation of the READ Act, schools and districts were not seeing the dramatic improvements in reading levels envisioned by state leaders.
- Colorado has seen only a 2 percent increase in third graders meeting or exceeding expectations on the Colorado Measures of Academic Success tests in English language arts.
- Statewide data shows only a 1 percent reduction in the number of students identified with a significant reading deficiency (SRD).
Reviewing the implementation of the READ Act, policy makers identified challenges that contributed to its lower-than-desired impact:
- The statute defined clear allowable uses of READ Act per-pupil intervention funds, but it did not provide clarity regarding accountability for the use of funds.
- Reporting requirements for the READ Act make it challenging to identify instructional programming and interventions effective in reducing the number of students identified with SRDs.
- The need for increasing teacher knowledge on evidence-based practices for teaching reading.
K – 3 Teacher Evidence-Based Reading Training Requirements
Colorado school districts are also required to ensure all kindergarten through 3rd grade teachers complete evidence-based training in teaching reading by the 2021-22 school year, as a result of changes to the Colorado READ Act in SB 19-199.
Learn about the hour, content and assessment requirements to complete this training and the various training options that will be available for K-3 teachers.
New READ Act UIP Requirements 2020-21
Beginning in 2020-21, Colorado school districts are required to report K-3 literacy instructional programming in their district Unified Improvement Plan. Visit the Unified Improvement Planning webpage for the most up-to-date resources and information.
New READ Act UIP Requirements Webinar Recording
School and District Administrators and Staff
Friday September 4th from 9:00 am- 9:45 am MST
Reporting Early Literacy Instructional Programming and READ/ELG funded teacher development in the UIP. A short Q and A was included to address questions.
Visit the UIP Training Page to view a recording of the webinar.
*In the webinar, an updated submission template was referenced. See links below to download the updated submission template and submission guide:
- Updated 20-21 UIP/READ Act Requirements Submission Template
- Updated 20-21 UIP/READ Act Requirements Submission Guide
News and Events
CDE launches campaign on importance of reading to children at home
To increase awareness of the importance of early literacy, the Colorado Department of Education launched a public information campaign to encourage and empower parents to make reading part of their daily routine with their children.
READ Act Rules
The State Board of Education finalized the Rules for the Administration of the Colorado Reading to Ensure Academic Development Act (READ Act), 1 CCR 301-9. This updates the rules to incorporate changes to the READ Act that occurred in the 2018 and 2019 legislative sessions.
2020 Approved Instructional Programming
2020 Approved Professional Development
During the Spring of 2020 CDE engaged in a review of professional development that will meet the requirements of the evidence-based training in teaching reading required for K-3 teachers. Due to the implications of Covid-19, the application to submit professional development programming for review was released only to vendors of professional development programming that was previously approved and on the READ Act Professional Development Advisory List.
Monthly READ Act Informational Webinars
In order to keep educators and other stakeholders informed of the changes in the READ Act brought about by SB 19-199, CDE will host monthly informational webinars.
Early Literacy Grant Rules Approved
SB 19-199 amended the Colorado READ Act and incorporated changes to the Early Literacy Grant program requiring an update to the rules. The state board approved the amended rules for the administration of the Early Literacy Grant program during the September board meeting. Updates include increased funding, additional reporting requirements and training for K-3 teachers.