Healthy Beginnings / Increasing Early Reading Levels

Increasing Early Reading Levels2021-03-26T06:20:14+00:00

Early learning sets the foundation for success1

Studies have proven that reading skill is linked to health outcomes. Education is associated with longer life expectancy, as well as improved health quality of life and health promoting behaviors.2

Students with limited reading abilities have a harder time keeping up across multiple subjects (including math, science, and other languages), and those who fall behind in the early grades often stay behind. Thus, early intervention is critical for children who are struggling with reading.1

Early learning is a priority for improving health. Increasing the number of 3rd graders who read at or about the proficient level will help set the foundation for success.

Indicator Progress

In 2015 (baseline year), 37.0% of 3rd graders were at proficient reading levels. The most recent data available show 48.5% (2019). We hope to reach a target of 60.0% or higher by 2022.

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More Data

Early Reading Levels

The data source for this indicator changed in 2015. The baseline will therefore change to 2015 for this indicator.

Baseline

37.0%

Current Rate

48.5%

Target

60.0%

Data Snapshot

In 2013, 45% of California 3rd graders were proficient or advanced in English Language Arts (reading), up from 33% in 2003.1

Only 33% of economically disadvantaged 3rd graders in 2013 were reading at proficient levels, compared with 67% of higher-income students.3

A higher proportion of Asian and White 3rd graders are reading at or above grade level when compared with African Americans and Latinos.3

Proportion of Third Grade Students with Reading Skills At or Above Proficiency, Over Time

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Proportion of Third Grade Students with Reading Skills At or Above Proficiency, by Demographic Category

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Proportion of Third Grade Students with Reading Skills At or Above Proficiency, Comparison by Economic Status and Race

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Proportion of Third Grade Students with Reading Skills At or Above Proficiency, by County

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Indicator Name: Proportion of third grade students whose readings skills are at or above the proficient level

Indicator Description: Third grade reading scores strongly predict later academic success, including whether or not a student will graduate from high school. In turn, educational attainment plays a big part in future health. Education has been linked to longer life expectancy, better quality of life, and more healthy behaviors. The California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress (CAASPP) was established on January 1, 2014. The CAASPP System replaced the Standardized Testing and Reporting (STAR) Program (which became inoperative on July 1, 2013), as the new state academic testing program. CAASPP is a system intended to provide information that can be used to monitor student progress and ensure that all students leave high school ready and prepared for college and career. The CAASPP encompasses computer-adaptive tests in English language arts/literacy (ELA), mathematics, science assessments, as well as student participation requirements.

It is important to note that a student’s CAASPP scores cannot be compared to scores that a child has previously received on the STAR tests because this test is based on the new California State Standards, which involves different types of test questions, and will not be reported using the STAR Program reporting categories

Demographic category definitions: Some demographic categories are specific to this indicator, particularly those related to English-Language fluency. Definitions have been taken from the California Longitudinal Pupil Achievement Data System (CALPADS) documentation web page. For additional details and background, please consult this page.

Economically disadvantaged: Students who are eligible for Free or Reduced-Price Meals (FRPM) under the National School Lunch Program (NSLP). Please see CALPADS Data Guide for more details.

English learner: A student in kindergarten through grade 12 for whom there is a report of a language other than English on the Home Language Survey and who, upon initial assessment in California using an appropriate state assessment (currently the California English Language Development Test (CELDT)) and from additional information when appropriate, is determined to lack the clearly defined English language skills of listening, speaking, reading, and/or writing necessary to succeed in the school’s regular instructional programs.

English only: A student in kindergarten through grade 12 for whom the only language reported on the Home Language Survey (HLS) is English or American Sign Language.

Ever-ELs: A student who has previously been classified as English learner during the year, regardless of whether they have been reclassified or not.

Fluent English proficient and English only: Combination of students classified in these two groups.

Initial fluent English proficient: A student in kindergarten through grade 12 for whom a language other than English is reported on the Home Language Survey and who, upon initial assessment in California using an appropriate state assessment (currently the California English Language Development Test (CELDT)) and from additional information when appropriate, is determined to be proficient in English.

Reclassified fluent English proficient: A student in kindergarten through grade 12 who, upon entering public school in California, is identified as an English learner (EL) and subsequently reclassified/redesignated in California, per Education Code 313, as proficient in English. Please see CALPADS Code Sets spreadsheet for more details.

Migrant education: Students enrolled in the California Department of Education Migrant Education program.

Data Limitations: CAASPP is required in public schools; it is unknown if the type of school (public, non-public) could affect the test scores. Note that not all students who should be taking the test actually complete the test. This data represents a conservative estimate of the proportion of third graders whose reading skills are at or above proficient levels.

Indicator Source: https://caaspp.cde.ca.gov/ (select Smarter Balanced Assessments then Research Files tab on top)

Indicator Calculation Methodology: Numerator: Number of students who scored in category “Percentage Standard Met and Above” / Number of students tested * 100. Suppression applied for groups of 10 or fewer students.

Program URL Link: http://www.cde.ca.gov/ta/tg/ca/

1. Lucile Packard Foundation for Childrens Health . (2015). Third Grade Students Scoring Proficient or Higher on English Language Arts CST. Retrieved November 17, 2015, from www.kidsdata.org: http://www.kidsdata.org/topic/127/readingproficiency/Map#jump=why-important&loct=3&fmt=133&tf=73&center=-13325098.893387,4509031.392449&zoom=1

2. Let’s Get Health California Task Force. (2012). Let’s Get Healthy California Task Force Final Report. Let’s Get Healthy CA Task Force. Weblink: http://www.chhs.ca.gov/pages/LGHCTF.aspx

3. Office of Health Equity. (August 2015). Portrait of Promise: California Statewide Plan to Promote Health Equity and Mental Health Equity. California Department of Public Health. Weblink: http://www.cdph.ca.gov/programs/Documents/CDPHOHEDisparityReportAug2015.pdf

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