StORytime Fact Sheet
Reading at grade level by the third grade is one of the single-greatest predictors of life-long success.
- Students who are not proficient readers at 3rd grade are four times more likely to drop out of school.1
- Children from professional families have heard 30 million more words by the time they are three years old than those from families in poverty.2
- Eighty-five to ninety percent of poor readers receiving intervention before third grade can increase reading skills to average levels; 75% of those receiving intervention after nine years old will continue to have difficulties throughout their life.3
- Eighty percent of students from lower-income families aren’t reading proficiently by the time they reach 4th grade.4
- Eighty-three percent of Black children and 81 percent of Latino children, are not reading proficiency by 4th grade, compared with 55 percent of White children and 49 percent of Asian children.5
- Nationally, fewer than 20% of students who were below grade level in third grade attended college, compared with 1/3 of students who were at grade level and nearly 60% of students who were above grade level.6
- Nationwide, about fifty percent of undergraduates and as many as 70 percent of those entering community colleges are placed in remedial courses. It is estimated that remedial classes cost the nation $3.6 billion a year.8
State of Oregon’s Children
- Thirty-three percent of entering Oregon kindergarteners could name five or few letters and 14% couldn’t name a single letter.
- 32 percent of Oregon 3rd graders are not reading on track at third grade. Within certain demographics, the percentages are even higher:
- Tribal Communities: 45%
- English Language Learners: 68%
- Economically Disadvantaged: 45%
- In Oregon, nearly one out of four children live in poverty
Parents and caregivers are a child’s most important first teacher.
Parents have the greatest influence on the achievement of young people; parental involvement with reading activities at home has significant positive influences on reading achievement, language comprehension and expressive language skills.
Parents and caregivers face a variety of obstacles that prevent them from focusing in early reading with their children, such as language barriers, lack of understanding on how to engage children in day-to-day activities, and misperceptions about their role as a child’s “teacher” outside of the classroom.
Every moment can be a teaching moment.
Families can easily support early literacy for their children in every day activities, such as grocery shopping, going on a walk, singing a song, telling a story or making a meal.
Critical vocabulary development that creates a foundation for reading well can be built around activities like playing, talking, singing and reading.
2 Hart, B., Risley, T. (Spring 2003). The Early Catastrophe; The 30 Million Word Gap by Age 3. American Educator.
3 Lesnick, J., Goerge, R., Smithgall, C., & Gwynne J. (2010). Reading on Grade Level in Third Grade: How Is It Related to High School Performance and College Enrollment? Chicago: Chapin Hall at the University of Chicago.
6 Lesnick, J., Goerge, R., Smithgall, C., & Gwynne J. (2010). Reading on Grade Level in Third Grade: How Is It Related to High School Performance and College Enrollment? Chicago: Chapin Hall at the University of Chicago.
7 Report was issued by the Charles A. Dana Center at the University of Texas, Complete College America, Education Commission of the States, and Jobs for the Future, December 2012.
9 “Kindergarten Assessment Data.” Oregon Department of Education and the Early Learning system. Jan. 2014.
10 Oregon Department of Education OAKS Test Results 2014
11 Oregon Department of Education OAKS Test Results 2014
12 “A Graphic View of Poverty in Oregon.” Oregon Center for Public Policy. N.p., n.d. Web. 22 Jan. 2014.