OH House Widens Pool Of 3rd-Grade Reading Teachers

Members of the Ohio House of Representatives have overwhelmingly approved a bill requiring all third graders to be proficient in reading before moving to fourth grade.
Members of the Ohio House of Representatives have overwhelmingly approved a bill requiring all third graders to be proficient in reading before moving to fourth grade.

The Ohio House has unanimously approved a bill making more teachers eligible to participate in meeting Ohio’s new third-grade reading guarantee.

In a 98-0 vote Wednesday, the House adopted revised teacher eligibility guidelines and other changes to the program, which requires that students be proficient in reading before leaving third grade.

House Education Chairman Gerald Stebelton said school districts and educators raised concerns about having adequate staff to help meet the guarantee. Only 4,200 of Ohio’s 34,000 licensed preschool-through-3rd grade teachers would have qualified as program instructors under initial guidelines.

Stebelton said lawmakers weren’t given enough time last year to anticipate all the problems with the program before it was approved as part of Gov. John Kasich’s (KAY’-siks) midterm budget.

House changes now return to the Senate.

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