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Galaviz’s Reading Test Bill Signed into Law by Little

March 15, 2024

Legislation exempting some English language learners from the state’s standardized reading test was signed into law by Gov. Brad Little on Monday.

Sponsored by Rep. Soñia Galaviz (D-Boise) and Sen. Carrie Semmelroth (D-Boise), the bill exempts students who have spent less than two years in a school in the United States and who score low on the state’s English language proficiency test from the Idaho Reading Indicator, a screening test to measure early literacy skills.

The bill eased through the legislative process with very little trouble, including with a 57-12 vote in the Idaho House and a 32-2 vote in the Senate.

The bill could exempt up to 1,400 students. Galaviz, an IEA member, said the new standard would improve testing results since “false negatives” would be eliminated from the data and that student stress would be reduced not since English language learners aren’t prepared to take the IRI.

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