At 19 Columbus elementary schools, fewer than half of third-graders passed their reading exams last year.
For the past several school years, 3 in 10 Columbus elementary schools have had passing rates at or below 50 percent on the state’s third-grade reading test. That’s the test that takes the spotlight this school year: Third-graders who fail it could have to repeat the grade next school year.
The “third-grade guarantee,” which was created by a new state law, means the Columbus school district faces a potential logistical emergency because so many of its schools struggle with the third-grade reading test. While a crisis in urban schools, almost every elementary school in central Ohio could see children retained at the end of this school year: 99 percent had some number of third-graders fail the reading test.