In 2019, the Alabama legislature passed the Alabama Literacy Act; it became effective September 1, 2019. The first group of students that falls under this act is 1st graders during the 2019-2020 school year.
The Alabama Literacy Act was established to implement steps to improve the reading proficiency of public school kindergarten to 3rd grade students and ensure that those students are able to read at or above grade level by the end of the 3rd grade.
The law states that all 3rd grade students (with a few “good cause” exemptions) shall demonstrate sufficient reading skills for promotion to 4th grade, beginning with the 2021-2022 School Year.
So why 3rd grade? Research shows that “90% of children with reading difficulties will achieve grade level in reading if they receive help in the 1st grade. Seventy percent of children whose help is delayed to age 9 or later continue to struggle throughout their school career.”*
A parent, custodial parent, or legal guardian of any K-3 student who exhibits a consistent deficiency in reading or characteristics of dyslexia at any time during the school year shall be notified in writing.