Site Index | CDE Offices | Staff Directory

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 Rules

On Tuesday, March 12, 2013, the State Board voted to approve the Rules for the Administration of the Colorado READ Act. A copy of the rules and the Cut-off Scores for Identifying a Significant Reading Deficiency document are linked below.


6/12/15 - Changes to Required K – 3 Reading Assessments in HB 15-1323

During the legislative session, HB 15-1323 passed bill which institutes some minor changes to school readiness and READ Act assessment requirements at the kindergarten level and for students who test at the proficient level in reading.

At the kindergarten level, HB 15-1323 provides a 90 day window at the beginning of the school year for districts to must administer an approved reading interim assessment to kindergarteners. If a district administers the READ Act assessment in the first 60 days of the school year, it is not required to administer the literacy component of the school readiness assessment. For students identified with a significant reading deficiency, the teacher must administer a diagnostic assessment to the student within 60 days of the previous assessment to determine the student’s specific reading skill deficiencies. Furthermore, if a kindergarten student is identified as having a significant reading deficiency, the district will include the student’s READ plan as a component of the student’s school readiness plan, which is consistent with the READ Act and with past CDE’s guidance to the field.

For students grades K – 3, changes to the READ Act related to the testing window for diagnostic assessment and students who demonstrate reading competency. For students identified with a significant reading deficiency, the teacher must administer a diagnostic assessment to the student within 60 days of the previous assessment to determine the student’s specific reading skill deficiencies. Districts are not required to administer READ Act interim assessments for students demonstrating reading competency for their grade level throughout the remainder of the specific school year. CDE will be working over the summer with the assessment providers of the approved READ Act assessments to identify cut-scores for grade level reading competency to help guide districts in making a decision about whether or not a student is demonstrating reading competency for his/her grade level. The department anticipates having guidance to the districts by late summer.

To learn more about changes to READ Act required assessments for first through third grade, please see the section below. A full description of all the changes can be found at the following link:

**NOTE: For those participating in special projects such as Early Literacy Grant (ELG) or Early Literacy Assessment Tool (ELAT), additional guidance will be provided through the project managers.

6/12/2015 - READ Act Rule Revisions

At its May 13, 2015 meeting, the State Board of Education voted to adopt amendments to the Rules for the Administration of the Colorado Reading to Ensure Academic Development Act (READ Act Rules).The amendments were in response to an opinion from the Attorney General with respect to sections that address how an English Learner may be identified as having a significant reading deficiency when their literacy instruction is provided in both English and Spanish.A copy of the approved rules is available by clicking here. If you have questions regarding these rule changes, please contact Alisa Dorman at: or 303-366-6016.

9/10/14 - Statewide Professional Development Opportunity

READing Foundations Academy (View Complete course description and downloadable flyer)

In the department’s continued efforts to support the advancement of reading for Colorado’s K – 3 children, the Office of Literacy has initiated a teacher training program called the READing Foundations Academy. The READing Foundations Academy is a no-cost professional development opportunity for Colorado educators in grades K – 3 that will provide teachers an opportunity to expand their knowledge of foundational reading skills, with ties to standards and comprehension throughout each class, to support their students in developing and advancing their reading ability. The department is working with BOCES and districts to provide this exciting opportunity.

View and register for sessions scheduled throughout the state or to arrange an academy in your region, contact Donna Bright at or call at 303-866-6002.

9/10/14 - DRA2 Announcement:

DRA2 Update

The department has important information for Colorado school districts that are currently using the Developmental Reading Assessment (DRA2) for the purposes of identifying significant reading deficiencies related to the READ Act. CDE has recently received a message from Pearson, the publisher of DRA2 indicating that they do not intend to resubmit DRA2 for the Colorado State Board of Education Approved List of Interim Assessments. Please view this communication here.

Last fall, CDE conducted a review process in accordance with C.R.S. 22-7-1209 to solicit and review interim reading assessment tools for inclusion on the Colorado State Board of Education Approved List of Interim Assessments. Pearson submitted DRA2 for review, but the assessment did not pass the review process. Publishers of assessments that were not recommended by the review committee were able to submit an appeal to the department. DRA2 did not pass the appeal process. Districts will have until July 1, 2016 (as allowed in statute, C.R.S. 22-7-1209) to transition to the approved interim assessments.

Please view the list of recommended interim assessments here. For a full description of the review process, please visit the READ Review Process webpage.

Quick Links


Contact Us

Colorado Dept. of Education
201 East Colfax Ave.
Denver, CO 80203
Phone: 303-866-6600
Fax: 303-830-0793
Contact CDE

CDE Hours
Mon - Fri 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
See also: Licensing Hours

Educator Licensing