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Colorado READ Act

The READ Act

The Colorado Reading To Ensure Academic Development Act (Colorado READ Act) was passed by the Colorado Legislature during the 2012 legislative session. The READ Act repeals the Colorado Basic Literacy Act (CBLA) as of July 1, 2013, keeping many of the elements of CBLA such as a focus on K-3 literacy, assessment, and individual plans for students reading below grade level. The READ Act differs from CBLA by focusing on students identified as having a significant reading deficiency, delineating requirements for parent communication, and providing funding to support intervention. Other components of the Colorado READ Act include a competitive Early Literacy Grant and a resource bank of assessments, instructional programming, and professional development.

READ Act Resources: 

Most frequently used resources by topic:

Information for Parents

Learn more about the Colorado READ Act including how to support reading at home and how to talk to your child's teacher about their reading progress. Discover resources to support early literacy and help your child read at grade level by the end of third grade.


Diverse groups of preschool girls sitting around reading books.


READ Plan Working Group 
(posted September 4, 2018)

CDE has reopened the application process for second or third teachers only to participate in a READ Plan working group.  All other participant categories have been filled. Applications will be accepted through September 21.  Click here to apply.  Applicants will be asked to submit a resume with their application.

This spring, a bill was passed to convene a working group to study the creation and use of READ plans.  The working group will be formed under the direction of the Commissioner and will work through early 2019. Once the working group completes its work, the Commissioner will submit a report of the recommendations to the State Board and the education committees of the House of Representatives and the Senate.

The working group will be comprised of educators, parents, principals, district leaders, and literacy experts and will be selected to represent districts from across the state.  The group will also include educators with expertise in special populations.

The working group will be convened virtually in September and will continue to meet regularly (bi-monthly or quarterly) through December 2019 to complete its work, and members will be provided travel reimbursement and, if applicable, substitute cost reimbursement.

For more information, contact Melissa Colsman at or 303-866-6737.


Notice of Rulemaking: Rules for Adminstration of the Early Literacy Grant Program
(posted August 24, 2018)

At the August 15, 2018 meeting, the State Board of Education approved notices of rulemaking for the administation of the Early Literacy Grant Program. The purpose of the rulemaking hearing is in response to changes made to the READ Act during the 2018 Colorado legislative session. Amendments to the Administration of the Early Literacy Grant Program rules include modifications to the grant fund distribution as well as creating a simplified grant application process for a rural school district or a small rural school district, or a district charter school or an institute charter school that is located with the boundaries of a rural or small rural district. The proposed rule change is technical in nature. These types of changes are typically initiated by the Office of Legislative Legal Services and are usually minor corrections to align with state statute or current practice and do not result in substantive changes.

You may also provide written comment to the rules via reply to this email or to  The recommended deadline for written comments is Wednesday, October 3 to allow adequate time for staff to review and incorporate comments into the rules.  However, we will accept written comments at any time up to and including the day of the hearing.  


2018 READ Conference
(posted May 22, 2018)

The Office of Literacy along with the Exceptional Student Services Unit at CDE will be hosting our fourth annual READing Conference on Thursday and Friday, September 27th and 28th, 2018.

  • This conference is designed to support the implementation of evidence based reading instruction. 
  • The target audience is K-3 educators including general education teachers, special education specialists, reading coaches, reading interventionists, English Language Development specialists, principals and school leadership teams.
  • The focus of the conference will be on direct and explicit instruction for all students including:  English Learners, emerging readers and struggling readers.
  • Our speakers this year include:
    • Anita Archer - focusing on the magic of instruction delivery and design, vocabulary development and reading fluency
    • Elsa Cardenas Hagen - focusing on English Learners and literacy development, vocabulary development as well as spelling and writing development. 
    • Lucy Hart Paulson  - focusing on our early learners with alphabet learning and evidence based approaches as well as direct and explicit instruction that is developmentally appropriate
    • William Van Cleave - focusing on vocabulary development for all learners as well as sentence to paragraph writing and the motor component of handwriting and keyboarding
    • Linda Farrell - focusing on leveled and decodable readers and other strategies to support reading in the K-3 grade range




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