Working together through continuous learning to improve the quality of life for all in DeKalb County, Indiana
An education initiative of the Community Foundation of DeKalb County

3rd Grade Literacy: What We’re Doing and What We’ve Accomplished October 2013


Our vision

DeKalb County students attain outstanding performance as measured by academic, vocational, and civic achievement.

What we’ll accomplish
  • Increase the percentage of 3rd grade students reading at a 3rd grade reading level.
  • Increase the civic achievement of youth in grades K-12.
Data we’re using to measure progress
  • Percentage of 3rd grade students reading at grade level as measured by the I-READ 3, effective September 13, 2012. Prior to September 2012, Fountas & Pinnell benchmark reading levels were used.

third-grade-literacy-overview-october-2013Baseline mid-year 2010: 78% (winter benchmark levels)

Year Goal Actual
2011 78% 73% (winter benchmark levels)
2012 80% 76% (winter benchmark levels)
2012 80% 85% (I-READ 3)
2013 86% 94% (I-READ 3)

Source: DeKalb County public school districts

Current status
  • In 2012, the measure of accountability was changed from Fountas & Pinnell benchmark reading levels to the state’s I-READ 3 assessment. I-READ 3 scores were found to align with other 3rd grade reading assessments, offer greater consistency, were easily accessible, and aligned with achievement information shared publicly.
  • While I-READ 3 scores have increased, there’s concern that relying on this single measure may not be giving the community the most accurate picture. Team is planning to discuss options for using multiple data sources in future.
What we’re doing to achieve our goals
  • KiPS, a partnership of Butler Public Library and the DeKalb Eastern school district designed to prepare entering kindergarten students for school, was implemented for year 3 in summer 2013. Enrollment was down to 21 students compared to 34 children in 2012 (44 in 2011). Pre– and post-survey results were positive.
  • Garrett-Keyser-Butler and DeKalb Central school districts are inviting families of 150 kindergarten students, who are striving to reach grade level, to DeKalb Reads parent literacy workshops in November. Workshops are being conducted at Eckhart and Waterloo libraries, and Cup of Blessing in Garrett. 33 families participated in Fall 2012.
  • 259 1st–5th grade students are in the YMCA’s Excel afterschool program, a partnership with DeKalb Central.

Oct 2013 K-12 3rd grade literacy road map PDF