[First Reprint]

ASSEMBLY, No. 3521

STATE OF NEW JERSEY

217th LEGISLATURE

INTRODUCED APRIL 4, 2016

 


 

Sponsored by:

Assemblywoman† ELIZABETH MAHER MUOIO

District 15 (Hunterdon and Mercer)

Assemblyman† REED GUSCIORA

District 15 (Hunterdon and Mercer)

Assemblyman† RALPH R. CAPUTO

District 28 (Essex)

Assemblywoman† MILA M. JASEY

District 27 (Essex and Morris)

Assemblywoman† ANGELA V. MCKNIGHT

District 31 (Hudson)

 

Co-Sponsored by:

Assemblywoman Jones and Assemblyman McKeon

 

 

 

 

SYNOPSIS

†††† Establishes pilot program in DOE to provide supplemental reading instruction to students in grades K through 3.†

 

CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT

†††† As reported by the Assembly Education Committee on June 5, 2017, with amendments.

 


An Act establishing a pilot program in the Department of Education to provide supplemental reading instruction and supplementing chapter 6 of Title 18A of the New Jersey Statutes.†

 

†††† Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:

 

†††† 1.† This act shall be known and may be cited as the ďLiteracy Through Technology Program.Ē

 

††††† 2.†† a.† The Commissioner of Education shall establish a three-year public school district pilot program to provide supplemental reading instruction to students enrolled in grades kindergarten through 3 in the pilot districts.† The goal of the pilot program shall be to improve studentsí literacy skills through the provision of an after school program that uses a combination of targeted software and traditional learning methods, thereby creating the strong foundation in literacy that is required for continued learning in all subjects.

††††† b.†† A school district which wants to participate in the pilot program shall submit an application to the commissioner.† The application shall include, but need not be limited to: the number and percentage of students who did not meet expectations in grade 3 on the most recent administration of the State assessment in English Language Arts/Literacy; and information on how participation in the pilot program will serve to advance the academic achievement of students enrolled in the district.

††††† c.†† The commissioner shall select up to 12 school districts for participation in the pilot program.† The commissioner shall select districts in the southern, central, and northern regions of the State and shall seek a cross section of school districts from urban, suburban, and rural areas of the State.† The commissioner shall select districts in which more than 1[80%] 75%1 of third grade students did not meet expectations on the most recent administration of the State assessment in English Language Arts/Literacy 1and that are spending below adequacy as determined pursuant to section 5 of P.L.2007, c.260 (C.18A:7F-47)1.

 

†††† 3.† The commissioner shall identify and distribute to all pilot districts a list of supplemental reading instruction software programs that have been approved for use in the after school program.† The commissioner shall select programs that are research and evidence based that provide supplemental reading instruction for students enrolled in grades kindergarten through 3.† In selecting the programs, the commissioner shall seek programs that: create a personalized learning path for students that continually tailors instruction to the studentís individual needs while providing the teacher with the resources to deliver direct instruction based on the student's performance data; align to the 1[Core Curriculum Content] New Jersey Student Learning1 Standards; are developmentally appropriate; and accelerate the development of reading skills.† The commissioner shall include one or more programs on the list that meet the unique needs of students with English as a second language.

 

†††† 4.† a. †Each pilot district shall provide an after school learning program to students enrolled in grades kindergarten through 3. †The pilot district shall offer the program to its K-3 students at no cost to the students.† The after school program shall be at a minimum one hour in length.† The program shall use one or more of the software programs approved by the commissioner pursuant to section 3 of this act.

†††† A pilot district shall ensure that:

†††† (1) †the after school portion of the school day aligns with the studentsí ongoing curriculum;

†††† (2) †each classroom has no more than 30 students;

†††† (3) †each classroom includes at least one appropriately certified teacher and one classroom aide; and

†††† (4) †each student is able to use the software program  for the minimum minutes each day as recommended by the software provider with the remainder of the after school portion of the day being used for direct traditional instruction by the teacher.

†††† b.† Each pilot district shall report to the commissioner at the mid-point and at the end of each program year, and at such other times as the commissioner may direct:

†††† (1) each participating studentís reading grade level at the time of the report compared with earlier reporting periods;

†††† (2) †for each participating student, data on the amount of time spent using the program software and one or more indicators of student progress during the reporting period;

†††† (3) a summary report showing student progress data for all participating students; and

†††† (4) such other data as may be required by the commissioner to measure student progress and the effectiveness of the program.

 

†††† 5.† Each pilot district shall be eligible to receive State support, as needed and determined by the commissioner, to implement the pilot program.† State support may be provided for costs associated with: the purchase of approved software programs; the employment of after school program staff; the training of program staff in the use of the software; and any technology upgrades that may be necessary for the implementation of the program.

 

†††† 6.† The commissioner shall conduct regular site visits to monitor the programs and shall annually review the pilot districtsí progress in implementing the after school program, using information submitted by pilot districts pursuant to subsection b. of section 4 of this act.† The commissioner shall compare the number and percentage of students who did not meet expectations in grade 3 on the most recent administration of the State assessment in English Language Arts/Literacy from the scores of the previous year.†

 

†††† 7.† No later than June 30 of the third school year following the establishment of the pilot program, the commissioner shall submit to the Governor, and to the Legislature pursuant to section 2 of P.L.1991, c.164 (C.52:14-19.1), a report that evaluates the effectiveness of the pilot program in increasing student achievement in English Language Arts/Literacy.† The report shall include a recommendation on the advisability of the programís continuation and extension to additional school districts.

 

†††† 8.† This act shall take effect immediately.

         each student is able to use the software program  for the minimum minutes each day as recommended by the software provider with the remainder of the after school portion of the day being used for direct traditional instruction by the teacher.

†††† Each pilot district must report to the commissioner at the mid-point and at the end of each program year, and at such other times as the commissioner may direct, on student usage and outcomes as set forth in the billís provisions.

†††† Each pilot district will be eligible to receive State support, as needed and determined by the commissioner, to implement the pilot program.† State support may be provided for costs associated with: the purchase of approved software programs; the employment of after school program staff; the training of program staff in the use of the software; and any technology upgrades that may be necessary for the implementation of the program.

†††† The commissioner is directed to conduct regular site visits to monitor the programs and to annually review the pilot districtsí progress in implementing the after school program. †The commissioner is directed to compare the number and percentage of students who did not meet expectations in grade 3 on the most recent administration of the State assessment in English Language Arts/Literacy from the scores of the previous year.

†††† No later than June 30 of the third school year following the establishment of the pilot program, the commissioner will submit to the Governor and the Legislature a report that evaluates the effectiveness of the pilot program in increasing student achievement in language arts.† The report will include a recommendation on the advisability of the programís continuation and extension to additional school districts.