Understanding Ohio’s Third Grade Reading Guarantee

Full Report: Understanding Ohio’s New Third Grade Reading Guarantee Law

Press Release: Understanding Ohio’s New Third Grade Reading Guarantee

Data Supplement: More Information about Your School District or School

Ohio’s new Third Grade Reading Guarantee law requires third graders in public schools – both district and charter – to achieve a specified score on the state reading test in order to advance to the fourth grade. To provide community leaders with meaningful information about the 5,500 third graders in Columbus district and public charter schools, KidsOhio.org has prepared the report, Understanding Ohio’s New Third Grade Reading Guarantee.

The report provides the rates of third graders scoring at each of the five performance levels on the fall 2013 test in every Franklin County school district, in each of the Ohio Urban 8 school districts, in 74 Columbus City Schools, and in the 39 Columbus-based brick and mortar charter schools. For context, the report also provides the rates of economically disadvantaged third graders, students learning English as a second language and students with disabilities.

The report found:

  • While more than 42 percent of Columbus third graders scored high enough on the October 2013 reading test to be promoted to fourth grade next fall, 58 percent have up to two more chances this spring or summer to score high enough to be promoted.
  • More than 20 percent of Columbus City Schools third graders scored at the two highest of the five performance levels, but more than 49 percent scored at the lowest level.
  • Among the 16 Franklin County school districts, Columbus City Schools had a higher rate of students scoring at the top performance level than Whitehall. However, that rate was lower than each of the county’s 14 other school districts.
  • Among third graders in Columbus-based public charter schools, over 18 percent scored at the highest two performance levels while 47 percent scored at the lowest level. The report also includes a sample reading passage and test questions, answers to frequently asked questions about the new Third Grade Reading Guarantee law and interviews with Columbus City Schools and public charter school leaders about what they are doing to help students improve their reading skills.

Columbus District and Charter School Students: Similar Demographics

Click here to read a one-page summary documenting that both types of Columbus public schools, district and charter, have high percentages of economically disadvantaged students and students of color.

Color-coded snapshot of which Columbus district and charter schools earned As and Bs in 2013

Columbus district schools: State Report Card Grades for 115 Columbus City Schools Buildings, 2012-2013 School Year

Columbus public charter schools: State Report Card Letter Grades for 60 Columbus-based, Brick-and-Mortar Charter Schools, 2012-2013 School Year



Where are Columbus’ highest and lowest performing schools located?

Seven percent of 115 Columbus district schools and seven percent of 56 public charter schools in Columbus earned an A or B for Performance Index in school year 2012-2013. Seventy-four percent of district schools and 64 percent of charter schools in Columbus earned a D or F. Performance Index is a composite score for all state tests in all tested grades. This is one of nine measures on the 2012-2013 state report card.

Click the links below to view a map of Columbus’ A and B schools and a map of the City’s D and F schools, as well as an analysis of Columbus district and charter school Performance Index grades.

Where are Columbus' highest performing performing school located?

Where are Columbus’ lowest performing district and public charter schools located? 
Performance Index Grades for Columbus District and Columbus Public Charter Schools 




If you have questions or feedback, please contact us at kidsohio@kidsohio.org.

Reynoldsburg School District Earns A+ with 38% Poverty Rate; Meets All 26 Indicators on State Report Card with Annual Per-­Pupil Spending of $9,300

Many of our readers request positive stories about schools and students.  We think you will appreciate our new report on the innovations that are taking place in Reynoldsburg City Schools.

In the course of preparing this report, we found that:

  •  Reynoldsburg City Schools improved academically despite the percentage of students who are economically disadvantaged increasing from 26 percent in 2007 to 38 percent in 2012.
  •  Every Reynoldsburg school had a Performance Index Score above 94 (out of 120) and a poverty rate above 18 percent.
  • The district has developed one of the largest STEM pipelines in the country with 2,150 students K-12 now enrolled in STEM schools.
  •  The district has found innovative ways to provide choice to all students with an annual per-pupil spending of $9,300.
  • Reynoldsburg students discovered how to keep sidewalks geese free.

Click here to read the full report.


Which public charter schools and voucher-accepting private schools are Franklin County students choosing?

More than 24,000 students from each of the 16 Franklin County school districts are choosing public charter schools or using vouchers to attend private schools.

You will learn the following seven things from this brief:

1) How many students from each Franklin County school district choose public charter schools and vouchers
2) Which public charter schools are most popular among Franklin County students
3) Which public charter schools have an A rating on the state report card and how many Franklin County students attend those schools
4) How Franklin County students are distributed among A-, B-, C-, D-, and F-rated public charter schools
5) Which private school vouchers are used by Franklin County students
6) Which voucher-accepting private schools are most popular among Franklin County students
7) What religions are represented among the voucher-accepting private schools attended by Franklin County students

Click here to read the brief.

Click here to view the data tied to this brief.

New resource shows high schoolers how to earn free college credit

Now is “primetime” for high school students who want to earn college credit for free during their high school career. The application window is open now and closes as early as March 31.

Today, KidsOhio and School Choice Ohio jointly released a guide for parents and students, Get a Jumpstart on College & Your Career: High School Classes Can Count for College without Costing You a Dime.

The brochure showcases four opportunities for students to earn from a few credits up to two years of college credit or more while they are in high school: 1) Early College High Schools, 2) College TechPrep, 3) Post Secondary Enrollment Options, and 4) Advanced Placement.

“Our state and national college attainment goals are to increase the number of degrees awarded in Ohio from 75,000 in 2009 to 100,000 by 2017 and to reclaim the United States’ top rank among nations,” said Ann Bischoff of KidsOhio, a nonprofit, nonpartisan education policy organization. “If we are going to meet these goals, we have to bolster college-going among low-income students and would-be first generation college-goers.”

One way to increase college success is to educate more Ohio students about opportunities for earning tuition-free college credit while in high school, known as dual enrollment. Not only does dual enrollment alleviate a financial burden for families, but it also exposes students to the real-life demands of college. This exposure builds confidence among would-be first generation college students about college-level work.

“The students who need these options the most are the ones who are last to find out about them,” said Sarah Pechan of School Choice Ohio. “Students are excited about the chance to ‘kill two birds with one stone’ and earn both college credit and high school credit for a single class. This brochure is the first place where all of these options have been compiled into one source.”

To download a copy of the brochure, click here. To request copies, please call School Choice Ohio at 614.223.1555 or KidsOhio at 614.228.6400.