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News Release - State Board approves new licensure exam to ensure teachers understand scientifically based reading instruction

June 10, 2021

State Board approves new licensure exam to ensure teachers understand scientifically based reading instruction

DENVER -- The State Board of Education at its two-day meeting on Wednesday and Thursday approved the adoption of the Praxis 5205 assessment, Teaching Reading: Elementary, as a license requirement for special education, early childhood and elementary teachers. 

The new testing requirement is meant to ensure candidates have the content knowledge to teach students to read using scientifically based reading instruction practices. This alignment will also allow licensed educators to meet the district-level READ Act professional development requirements during licensure.

The Teaching Reading: Elementary assessment will be included as a requirement for an Early Childhood Education license, with candidates also required to pass the current exam – Praxis 5024: Education of Young Children. For the Elementary and Special Education Generalist license requirements, the new exam will replace the current exam – Praxis 5002: Elementary Education Reading/Language Arts Subtest.

Teacher candidates in the three licensure areas will begin taking the exam Sept. 1, with a score of 159 required to pass. The expected additional cost of adding the exam for each individual teacher candidate ranges from $106 to $146. CDE will accept prior exam requirements if Praxis exams were either already passed or in progress.

Board approves Early Literacy Grants for 13 local education providers

The board approved $1,125,000 in grants to 13 local education providers for early literacy professional development for elementary educators. The Early Literacy Grant recipients include five rural or small rural districts, three urban/suburban districts and one charter school.

The grant will be used to supplement the READ Act’s K-3 teacher training requirement, which is intended to deepen teachers’ knowledge and support implementation of scientifically based reading instruction practices.  

Holocaust and Genocide Studies Standards

The board amended and approved final recommendations from the Holocaust and genocides studies standards committee. The board's amendments included the addition of a more extensive list of genocides, labeling the types of genocide based on historical evidence and some vocabulary edits.

The Holocaust and genocide studies standards are required by legislation to be adopted by July 1. This content will be incorporated into the social studies standards, which are in the review process. By July 1, CDE will provide a publicly available resource bank with materials to help teach the standards. School districts are required to adopt the Holocaust and genocide studies standards into a course required for graduation by July 1, 2023. 

Board agrees to file friend-of-the-court brief in support of District 11

The board, by a vote of 4-3, asked the Colorado Attorney General’s Office to file a friend-of-the-court brief on its behalf with Colorado Court of Appeals in support of Colorado Springs District 11’s position in its case against Education reEnvisioned BOCES. The case asks the court to determine whether a Board of Cooperative Education services has the authority to operate a school within the geographic boundaries of a non-member district.

In other actions, the board:

The State Board of Education will not hold a monthly meeting in July. Its next monthly meeting will be held Aug. 11 and 12.​