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Teacher Information on K-3 Teacher Training in Evidence-based Reading

K-3 Teacher Training in Evidence-based Reading

This webpage contains the information educators required to complete K-3 evidence-based reading training need.

Too many Colorado students are struggling with reading

Students need to learn to read at grade level by the end of third grade so they can read to learn in fourth grade and beyond. Yet, only 40% of Colorado's third graders are meeting expectations on the Colorado Measures of Academic Success tests in English language arts.

The Colorado Reading to Ensure Academic Development Act was passed in 2012 with the goal of dramatically improving reading for our youngest learners. Since then, Colorado has seen only a 2% increase in third graders meeting or exceeding expectations on the Colorado Measures of Academic Success tests in English language arts. In addition, statewide data shows only a 1% reduction in the number of students identified with a significant reading deficiency.

Legislators update READ Act to emphasize evidence-based reading instruction

In 2019, the legislature made several changes to the READ Act to help educators support reading success among our state's youngest learners. Not all of Colorado's educators have had the opportunity to learn the science of teaching reading in their teacher training programs, so one of the changes to the READ Act will require training on the latest evidence-based reading instruction strategies for all K-3 teachers.

Following a six-month extension approved by the State Board of Education, all K-3 teachers must complete the teacher training by Jan. 31, 2022. This is a one-time requirement for teachers. Districts, BOCES, and charters that do not meet the requirements will be ineligible for READ Act funds for the 2022-23 school year. Each year going forward, districts will need to make sure teachers new to K-3 have met this requirement. 

The training must:

Learn more about the 2019 changes to the READ Act.


How Can Teachers Meet the Requirement?

The statute and State Board of Education rules provide a number of pathways for teachers to show they meet this requirement:

1. Have a Reading Teacher or Reading Specialist endorsement​.

2. Pass a state board-approved assessment of knowledge of teaching reading​.

  • Teachers who have completed one of the approved evidence-based training options but lack proof of an end of course assessment may take and pass an alternative assessment authorized by the State Board.
  • The Praxis Teaching Reading: Elementary 5205 exam with the passing score of 159 was approved by the state board in April 2020.

3. Submit evidence of successfully completing an undergraduate or graduate course in teaching reading for CDE to review to determine whether it meets the statutory requirement.

4. Submit evidence of successfully completing a course in teaching reading appropriate for license renewal for CDE to review to determine whether it meets the statutory requirement. 

5. Complete one of the two no-cost CDE-provided training options.

6. Complete CDE-approved training provided by a district or BOCES.

See your district or BOCES for available programs.

7. Complete a training program from the CDE Advisory List of Professional Development.

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What If I Don't Meet the Requirement?

The K-3 teacher training requirement does not affect a teacher's licensure status.

Districts are responsible for ensuring all of their K-3 teachers have met this requirement by the January 31, 2022 in order to receive READ Act per-pupil intervention funds for the 2022-23 school year.

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Who Can I Contact with Questions?

Find answers to Frequently Asked Questions here.

To ensure alignment with local district plans to support teacher fulfillment of this training requirement, teachers and school staff are encouraged to reach out to district leadership with related questions. For further assistance, email readact@cde.state.co.us.

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