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Student Support and Remediation: Student Participation Requirements

As states continue to implement expanded graduation requirements – including additional Carnegie unit requirements and exit exams – it is becoming increasingly important to provide students with opportunities to catch up when they're behind. It's also becoming increasingly important to quickly identify when students begin to get behind to reach out with help before they fail. The information below describes state high school remediation requirements as defined by state statutes and regulations.

1. Do states require remediation for low-performing high school students?

Why does it matter?
  • States benefit when more of their citizens graduate with a high school diploma, and students benefit when they earn a high school diploma.
  • States, students and the business community benefit when students graduating from high school have adequate skills to succeed on the job.
  • States and students benefit when students are prepared prior to enrollment in postsecondary studies.
  • Students benefit when academic deficiencies are addressed as early as possible in their high school career.
  • Students and schools benefit when student participation in needed remediation is mandatory, and not left to a student's choice to participate.


  • Currently, state-level policies in 33 states focus on the remediation of high school students meeting specific criteria (this number does not include states with blanket remediation policies addressed at low-performing schools and districts). Policies in these 33 states require districts or schools to do one or more of the following at the high school level: (1) provide remediation , (2) have a program of remediation in place or (3) determine a plan for remediation. Michigan does not explicitly require that remediation be provided to students, but does require that data from the Michigan Merit Examination be provided to allow parents and teachers to prepare remediation plans. (States shaded in blue currently have relevant remediation policies.)


    2. Do states have a process in place for identifying students for remediation?

    Why does it matter?
  • Students benefit when schools are provided with clear direction on when and in what subjects to provide remediation.
  • Students benefit when academic deficiencies are caught and addressed early.

    How:

    States commonly use a combination of state and locally adopted measures. Thirty states use state assessments to determine student eligibility for remediation. Seventeen states direct districts to use locally determined indicators, including locally-adopted assessments, promotion policies or classroom performance. Five states identify other indicators. For example, students identified in Mississippi are those who have failed two ore more grades or have been suspended or expelled for 20 or more days.

    Subject areas:
    Listed below are the number of states that require remediation for underperformance in specified subject areas:
    • English/language arts: 30 (Although many states specifically indicate reading or writing, for the purposes of this database, English language arts includes reading, writing and literacy.)
    • Mathematics: 29
    • Science: 22
    • Social studies: 9
    Methodology: This information was collected primarily from state statutes, rules and regulations, and will be updated as new policies and programs are enacted. Additions or corrections to listed policies are welcome.

    Last updated: June 25, 2007
     
    Please contact Kyle Zinth with questions or comments about the database. Email: kzinth@ecs.org
  • State requires remediation for low-performing high school students State specifies a process for identifying students to receive additional subject time in certain subject areas
    Alabama Yes, schools are required to offer remediation and students must participate unless a parent/guardian provides written permission to opt-out. How: Performance on any part of the state exit exam.
    When: 11th-12th grades.
    Subject Areas: Reading, language arts, mathematics, science and social studies.
    Arkansas Yes, districts are required to provide remediation and students must participate. How: Districts and schools required to use multiple assessments, which include, but are not limited to state assessments. Students may also be identified through grades, observations and other factors considered appropriate by teachers or administrators. (High school students are required to take end-of-course examinations through the state's assessment system.)
    When: 9th-12th grades, as student completes relevant course.
    Subject Areas: Mathematics and English language arts. (End-of-course exam in Algebra I and Geometry, 9th grade test in reading and math, 11th grade literacy exam. End-of-course in Biology starting 2007-08)
    California Yes, districts required to provide. How: Students who fail to demonstrate proficiency on the state exit exam or who are not demonstrating sufficient progress toward passing the exam. Sufficient progress is determined by student performance on state assessments and student grades or other indicators designated by the district.
    When: 9th-12th grades for students who do not demonstrate sufficient progress toward passing the exit examination. (Also pertains to students in 7th-8th grades.) 10th-12th grade for students who have failed the exit exam. (Exit exam first administered in the 10th grade and is retaken as needed.)
    Subject Areas: Exit exam administered in English language arts and mathematics. Additionally, state assesses 9th graders in English language arts, mathematics and science, 10th graders in English language arts, mathematics, science and history-social studies and 11th graders in English language arts, math, science and history-social studies.
    Colorado No. Colorado does not have a state-wide exit exam; however, districts that adopt an exit exam are required to provide remediation to students who fail to pass the exam.
    No
    Connecticut Yes, local boards are required to identify a course of study for students. How: Determined by district criteria and performance on 10th grade mastery test.
    When: At least 10th grade.
    Subject Areas: 10th grade mastery test given in reading, writing and mathematics. Starting in 2007-08, assessment will be given in science as well. Districts may have additional subject requirements.
    Delaware Yes, schools must prepare individual improvement plans for identified students. (Appears in practice in 9th grade although policy no longer includes 9th grade.) How: Through performance on assessments included in the Delaware Student Testing Program.
    When: 9th grade (Appears in practice in 9th grade although policy no longer includes 9th grade.)
    Subject Areas: Reading and mathematics
    Florida Yes, districts required to offer, and students are required to participate in reading and mathematics remediation. How: Through performance on the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test (FCAT). Additionally, students who fail to meet grade-specific district-set levels of performance in reading, writing, science and mathematics must either (1) receive remediation or (2) be retained in grade in an intensive program that is different from the previous year's program and takes the student's learning style into account.
    When: 9th-11th grades. Remediation to occur the year following identification. The FCAT exam serves as the high school exit exam in the 10th grade. Science assessed at 11th grade.
    Subject Areas: Reading, mathematics and science.
    Georgia Yes, districts must provide services to eligible students. How: Students must be provided with remedial education if they meet two of the following conditions: (1) They have been through the formal student support team process and have documented evidence to support the placement in remedial education; (2) They have been retained in grade; (3) They are receiving services under Part A of Chapter 1 of Title 1 of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act; (4) They have been recommended by a teacher who has documented: low performance in reading or mathematics; an inability to verbally express ideas and write or dictate a meaningful sentence; or current test information in the student file indicates they have a score at or below the 25th percentile; (5) They have failed either a language arts or a mathematics course; (6) The student's 8th grade Criterion-Referenced Competency Test scores indicate the student has a score in the "Does Not Meet" category in reading, English/Language arts or mathematics.
    When: 9th-12th grades.
    Subject Areas: Reading, mathematics and writing.
    Illinois Yes, must be offered and students are required to participate. How: Students performing at levels two grades below their current placement, determined through state or local assessments or teacher judgment. Additionally, students identified through locally-determined grade promotion policies as not qualifying for promotion must be provided remedial assistance.
    When: Students required to take Prairie State Achievement Examination in 11th grade.
    Subject Areas: Reading, writing, mathematics and science.
    Indiana Yes, districts are required to hold a conference with students and their parents at which time they must present a proposed remediation plan for the student. Students must participate in remediation to be eligible to graduate without passing the exit exam. How: Performance on Indiana Statewide Testing for Educational Progress (ISTEP).
    When: 9th and 10th grades.
    Subject Areas: English language arts and mathematics.
    Kentucky Yes, districts must offer services, and may require student participation. How: Students who have been retained in grade or at risk of not graduating on time or dropping out.
    When: Does not specify.
    Subject Areas: Does not specify. However, starting in 2007-08, 10th, 11th and 12th grade students have the option of taking the ACT WorkKeys assessment. Students whose scores indicate assistance is required in reading for information, locating information or applied mathematics must have intervention strategies incorporated into their learning plans.
    Louisiana Yes, districts must offer remediation, students may opt out with written documentation. How: Student performance on the state Graduation Exit Examination (GEE) tests.
    When: State's GEE exit exam is first administered in the 10th grade.
    Subject Areas: English language arts, mathematics, social studies and science.
    Maryland Yes, local school systems are required to provide appropriate assistance to strengthen areas of weakness. How: Through performance on Maryland High School Assessments, which are end-of-course examinations.
    When: 9th-12 grades, dependent upon when student takes course.
    Subject Areas: English II, algebra/data analysis, biology and government.
    Michigan No. Although students failing to meet expectations for each standard on the Michigan Merit Examination must be provided with an individual report that will allow the student's parents and teachers to assess and remedy problems before the student moves to the next grade. How: Performance on the Michigan Merit Examination.
    When: Assessment administered in 11th grade.
    Subject Areas: English language arts, mathematics, science and social studies.
    Minnesota Yes, districts required to develop a plan for identified students. How: Through performance on state Basic Skills assessments through class of 2009.
    When: At least two years before the student's anticipated graduation.
    Subject Areas: Reading, mathematics and written composition. Basic Skills assessment in reading and mathematics first administered in 8th grade, written composition in 10th.

    The state is in the process of phasing in the Graduation Required Assessment for Diploma (GRAD), effective with the class of 2010. GRAD will assess writing in 9th grade, reading in 10th grade and mathematics in 11th grade. The rulemaking process will address remediation requirements.
    Mississippi Yes, districts must offer intensive interventions. How: Students may be identified through informal classroom assessment, benchmark assessment instruments and large-scale assessments.
    When: Students in 9th-12 grades who have failed two grades or have been suspended or expelled for more than 20 days in the current school year.
    Subject Areas: Does not specify.
    Nevada Yes, districts required to provide services, and 11th graders who have failed exit exam twice or more required to participate. (Required participation may be waived by local superintendent.) How: Students who fail any of the high school proficiency examinations two or more times or who are deemed deficient in the minimum number of credits to be promoted to the next grade, as defined in NEV. ADMIN. CODE 389.659.
    When: Promotion-related remediation: 9th-12th grades. Exit exam related remediation: 11th-12th grades. (Exit exam first administered in 10th grade.)
    Subject Areas: English, mathematics and science.
    New Hampshire Yes, high school instructional programs must include the provision of remedial instruction as needed. No
    New Jersey Yes, districts are required to provide services. How: Students performing below established levels of proficiency on state or local assessments.
    When: 11th and 12th grades.
    Subject Areas: Mathematics, language arts literacy and science.
    New York Yes, districts are required to provide academic intervention services. How: State intermediate assessments and state examinations required for graduation, as well as district-developed or adopted procedures to identify students at risk of not achieving state learning standards.
    When: 9th-12th grades.
    Subject Areas: English language arts, mathematics, social studies and science.
    North Carolina Yes, districts must provide.
    How: Through state assessments – including end-of-course exams – and locally adopted student promotion policies.
    When: 9th grade and above.
    Subject Areas: Reading, mathematics or "a portion of the multiple choice or performance computer skills tests[.]" As of the 2006-07 school year, students must pass end-of-course exams in English I, U.S. History, Biology, Civics and Economics and Algebra I.
    Ohio Yes, districts required to provide intervention services. How: Students failing to perform at least at the proficient level on the state graduation exam.
    When: The test is first administered in the 10th grade, and administered as necessary for 11th and 12th grade students failing to reach the proficient level.
    Subject Areas: Reading, writing, mathematics, science and social studies.
    Oklahoma Yes, districts are required to provide remediation. How: Performance on state end-of-instruction tests.
    When: 9th-12th grades, dependent upon when student takes class.
    Subject Areas: English II, English III, U.S. History, Biology I, Algebra I, Algebra II and Geometry (The state is in the process of phasing in exams for all of the subjects, and starting with freshmen entering in 2008, students will be required to pass end-of-instruction exams in Algebra I, English II, and tests in two other subject areas. OKLA. STAT. TIT. 70, § 1210.523)
    Oregon Yes, districts are required to provide additional services. How: Through performance on Oregon statewide assessments.
    When: 10th grade. (Students may take exam early in 8th or 9th grade, or 11th or 12th as a make-up.)
    Subject Areas: English, mathematics and science.
    Pennsylvania Yes, districts required to establish programs to serve identified students. How: Through performance on Pennsylvania System of School Assessment.
    When: Assessment given in 11th grade, with additional opportunity in 12th grade.
    Subject Areas: Mathematics and Reading
    Rhode Island Yes, each high school is required to have specific program in place to support students. How: Through department of education approved diagnostic assessments.
    When: 9th and 11th grades.
    Subject Areas: English language arts.
    South Carolina Yes, districts required to provide academic assistance. How: Through performance on high school end-of-course exams.
    When: 9th-12th, dependent upon when student takes course.
    Subject Areas: Algebra 1/Math for the Technologies 2, English 1, Physical Science, and U.S. History and the Constitution.
    Tennessee Yes, districts required to provide interventions. Students required to participate. How: Through student performance on statewide competency test and gateway examinations.
    When: Competency test first administered in 9th grade, writing assessment in 11th grade and other gateway tests. Grades vary as tests are administered following conclusion of courses.
    Subject Areas: Competency test: Mathematics and English language arts. Gateway examinations: English language arts, mathematics and science.
    Texas Yes, districts are required to provide intensive interventions. How: Student performance on any Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) exam. District's determination for students not likely to graduate within five years. Students identified as at-risk of dropping out through classroom performance in foundation curriculum subjects, state assessments and multiple other measures, including pregnancy.
    When: 9th-11th grades (11th-grade TAKS serves as the state's exit examination.)
    Subject Areas: English language arts, mathematics, science and social studies.

    The state will transition to the use of end-of-course exams for students entering 9th grade in 2011-12. Districts will be required to provide accelerated instruction to students who do not perform satisfactorily on end-of-course exams.
    Utah Yes, districts required to provide remedial services. Student participation is mandatory. How: Determined by classroom performance.
    When: 7th-12th grades.
    Subject Areas: English, mathematics, science and social studies.
    Virginia Yes, local boards required to develop and implement programs of prevention, intervention and remediation. How: Local determination as well as students identified through use of Standards of Learning (SOL) assessments, end-of-course exams administered to determine if a student has earned verifiable credit towards graduation.
    When: 9th-12th grades.
    Subject Areas: English, mathematics, science, history and social sciences.
    Washington Yes, districts are required to offer remedial services. How: Through performance on Washington Assessment of Student Learning (WASL) or district selected assessments.
    When: 9th-12th grade
    Subject Areas: Reading, writing and mathematics. (Science effective class of 2010)
    West Virginia Yes, students who do not demonstrate mastery of the content standards and objectives must be provided extra help and extra time through intervention strategies. How: Through performance on state assessments.
    When: 10th grade.
    Subject Areas: Reading/Language Arts, Math, Science (West Virginia Educational Standards Test, or WESTEST); Writing (West Virginia Writing Assessment).
    Wisconsin Yes, local boards required to provide services. How: Students who meet at least two of the following criteria: (1) are one or more years behind their age group in the number of high school credits attained; (2) two or more years behind their age group in basic skill levels, as measured by formal and informal assessment; (3) habitual truants; (4) parents; or (5) adjudicated delinquents.
    When: Students between 9th-12th grades. (Policy also pertains to students in 5th-8th grade who meet certain criteria.)
    Subject Areas: Includes reading and mathematics.


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