Local superintendents react to the 3rd grade state reading test scores

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OKLAHOMA CITY, OKLAHOMA -- An Oklahoma bill passed by the state House Monday, would allow more options for 3rd graders who failed the state reading test, and now face being held back a grade.

"There is just no wiggle room. The parent has no say. The student, the teacher, the administrator have no say in this. It's really down to the test. You either pass this test or you don't," said superintendent Tuck.

9.8% of 3rd graders at Madill Public Schools failed the mandatory state reading test.
But superintendent, Jon Tuck, says that number includes special needs and bilingual students, who took the same test this year.

"A lot of the material we've gotten from state department this year has been retracted or had to be re-done because it was in-accurate. So, obviously, we need to get some firm numbers and make sure they're accurate," said Tuck.

"We have an excellent summer planned for our struggling readers and we're going to have a plan to take them to a higher level in the years to come," said superintendent, Sonny Bates.

At Ardmore City Schools, 19.4% of 3rd graders may have to repeat the 3rd grade.
But Bates remains optimistic, especially after the House passed the revised bill on Monday.

"I think it's very, very important it was passed because it doesn't just look at a test score. It looks at the whole child,"said state representative, Pat Ownbey.
Ownbey co-authored the bill, which he says would allow more flexibility in deciding whether or not a 3rd grader should be held back.

"It's a team of people including an administrator, a teacher, not only the 3rd grade teacher, but the 4th grade teacher, where that child is going to end up," said Ownbey.

"It really is a show of confidence from legislators that, given that chance, the schools, along with the community, can develop kids that are good readers, can comprehend," said Bates.

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