Office of Literacy

Michigan’s 3rd Grade Reading Law


What Does Michigan’s New 3rd Grade Reading Law Mean for Your Child?

Would you like to know more about Michigan’s 3rd Grade Reading Law and how DPSCD is working with parents to improve early literacy? Parent Information Meetings are being scheduled throughout the district. These meetings are held at host schools but are open to any DPSCD parent or guardian.

Upcoming informational sessions

  • Carleton Elementary School: Wednesday, December 13 at 8:00 a.m.
  • Bates Academy: Wednesday, December 19 at 9:30 a.m.
  • Bennett Elementary School: Wednesday, December 20 at 8:30 a.m. (Spanish Translation will be provided)

Additional evening sessions will be held in January. Stay tuned for dates, times and locations.

About the reading law

Michigan recently passed a new reading law (MCL 380.1280f) that will be in full effect for 3rd-grade students during the 2019-2020 school year. To begin the process, school districts must choose an assessment system for grades K-3 and deliver a student diagnostic report to parents during the current 2017-2018 school year. Detroit Public Schools Community District (DPSCD) has selected the i-Ready Diagnostic assessment. i-Ready is an online program that will assess each student’s individual needs and monitor their progress throughout the school year.

Beginning in November, parents will be notified of their child’s performance on the i-Ready Diagnostic. Students demonstrating a reading deficiency will receive an Individual Reading Improvement Plan. The Individual Reading Improvement Plan will outline how the school will address the reading deficiency and will also provide at-home recommendations and resources to improve reading skills. Parents of students who receive an Individual Reading Improvement Plan will be asked to attend a parent conference where they will be empowered to assist their child with a Read-at-Home Plan & Toolkit.

While this will not occur during the 2017-2018 school year, it is important to note that the law will require retention of 3rd-grade students with a reading deficiency based on state assessment during the 2019–2020 school year.

If you have questions about your child’s current assessment results or the Michigan 3rd grade reading law, please reach out to your child’s teacher or school leadership for additional help.

In addition, Detroit Public Schools Community District will also hold informational sessions throughout the year for parents and guardians to learn more about understanding the Individual Reading Improvement Plan, getting reading help for their child, and the new law. Please check back here for future meeting dates and times.

Supporting Documents


MyOn is a program that gives students access to books and helps them learn to love reading. This flyer explains how to access MyOn from home.

MyOn Family Access Flyer

i-Ready provides all families with access to a free app that promotes vocabulary development. This flyer explains how to access this app from home.


Detroit Promise

Any student who is graduating or plans to graduate from a DPSCD High School is eligible to receive a tuition-free path to an associates degree, technical certificate, or bachelors degree at any one of five participating community colleges or 17 four-year universities. (See list of schools below)

The Detroit Promise is for high school seniors attending any high school in Detroit and living in Detroit. Students must meet both requirements. Students who attended multiple schools are eligible as long as all of  the schools were located in Detroit.  To qualify students must:

  • Successfully complete and submit the  FAFSA .
  • Register for the Detroit Promise by June 2018.
  • Be admitted to a participating college.

There are two college pathways: The Community College Pathway and the University Pathway.

Community College Pathway

  • The student must attend at least junior and senior year and graduate from any Detroit high school.
  • Reside in Detroit for at least junior and senior year of high school.

The following schools are Detroit Promise two-year Community College partners:

  • Henry Ford College
  • Macomb Community College
  • Oakland Community College
  • Schoolcraft College
  • Wayne County Community College District

University Pathway

  • Attend all four years and graduate from any Detroit high school.
  • Reside in Detroit for all four years of high school.
  • Must have a 3.0 cumulative GPA as of Feb. 15 in your senior year.
  • Must have a score of at least a 21 on the ACT or at least 1060 on the SAT. (colleges and universities may require a higher score)

Below is a list of partnering four-year schools. Unlimited partners have an unlimited number of scholarships available for Detroit Promise students. Limited partners have a limited number of scholarships reserved for Detroit Promise students.

Unlimited Partners

  • Albion College
  • Cleary University
  • Eastern Michigan University
  • Grand Valley State University
  • Madonna University
  • Michigan State University
  • University of Michigan – Ann Arbor
  • University of Michigan – Dearborn
  • University of Michigan – Flint
  • Wayne State University
  • Western Michigan University

Limited Partners

  • Central Michigan University
  • Marygrove College
  • Michigan Technological University
  • Northern Michigan University
  • Oakland University
  • Saginaw Valley State University
  • University of Detroit – Mercy

For more information, please visit The Detroit Regional Chamber of Commerce or email


Strategic Plan


We educate and empower every student, in every community, every day, to build a stronger Detroit.


All students will have the knowledge, skills, and confidence necessary to thrive in our city, our nation, our world.

Core Values

Students First

Make decisions that are in the best interest of students. Use every resource strategically so that we can meet students’ individual needs.


Be relentless in your pursuit of greatness. Be bold and innovate. Learn from your mistakes. Hold yourself and others to high standards.


Do the right thing, even when no one is looking. Be honest. Be trustworthy. Be accountable.


Diversity is an asset that makes us stronger. Advocate for the needs of others. Ensure that all members of our community have access to the tools and resources they need to be successful.


Listen. Empathize. Respond. Own problems and help to solve them.


Embrace hard work and persevere in the face of challenges. Follow through on your commitments and strive to do your best, no matter what.


Outstanding Achievement

Dramatically improve the academic experience of all students to ensure they are college and career ready.

Transformative Culture

Transform our culture so that students, families, community members, and staff feel safe, respected, and connected.

Whole Child Commitment

Champion a whole child approach that unlocks students’ full potential.

Exceptional Talent

Build an excellent team of dedicated staff to serve our students.

Responsible Stewardship

Manage and deploy our resources responsibly, transparently, and equitably to support our students’ success.


About our Language Arts Curriculum

Imagine It Pics. (2)Grades K – 6:  Imagine It! Reading Series

The SRA Imagine It! Reading Series is a research-based program that contains literature intended to expose students to a variety of different writing styles and genres. Lessons are delivered through systematic, explicit instruction.

Essential Concepts Taught in Imagine It! Reading

The alphabetic principle: letters work together in a systematic way to connect spoken language to written words

Print awareness: recognizing the nature of written language, such as print goes left to right and top to bottom

Phonemic awareness: hearing and understanding the sounds from which words are made

Systematic, explicit phonics: the association between the sounds of the language and the written symbols/spellings- that have been chosen to represent those sounds

Comprehension strategies and skills: to understand what is being read

The writing process and writing skills: to teach students to write with clarity and coherence

Spelling and vocabulary: spelling is a fundamental skill in written communication and vocabulary strategies help students learn, remember, and incorporate unknown words into their existing reading, writing, speaking, and listening vocabularies

Grammar, usage, and mechanics: to effectively communicate through writing

Grades 7 – 8: Prentice Hall Literature and Prentice Hall Writing and Grammar

Prentice Hall Literature and Prentice Hall Writing and Grammar are the core components of the 7th and 8th grade English/Language Arts curriculum. Prentice Hall selections incorporate some of the classics along with high-interest contemporary literature. It also has a skills focus that emphasizes reading and vocabulary development.

Grade 7 Prentice Hall Literature

Grade 7 Prentice Hall: Literature Prentice Hall: Writing and Grammar

Grade 8 Prentice Hall Literature

Grade 8 Prentice Hall: Literature Grade 8 Prentice Hall: Writing and Grammar

Grades 9 – 12: McDougal Littell Literature

McDougal Littell Literature provides core reading instruction for the 9th, 11th and 12th grade English/Language Arts curriculum. The 10th Grade edition of McDougal Littell Literature is used to supplement the Holt Rinehart and Winston African American Literature text. McDougal Littell material encourages students to explore the world of art, literature, and life’s big questions. The unique organization around clusters of standards allows for the teaching of major literary concepts across genres. Standards that belong together are taught together. Students analyze fiction, nonfiction, poetry, drama, and media across clusters of standards. Special features support visual and media literacy, along with research strategies.

Grade 9 Literature

Grade 9 McDougal Littell: The Language of Literature

Grade 10 Literature

Grade 10 Holt Rinehart Winston: African American Literature Grade 10 McDougal Littell: Literature

Grade 11 Literature

Grade 11 American Literature

Grade 12 Literature

Grade 12 British Literature

Curriculum Support

The English/Language Arts curriculum of the Detroit Public Schools District is aligned with national and state Language Arts standards. The Michigan English Language Arts Grade Level Content Expectations for grades K – 8 and the High School Content Expectations for grades 9 – 12 are available to the public.

Teachers are provided consistent professional development in best practices to service all learning styles and in 2014, students will be assessed on the new Common Core Standards.