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Montana has implemented several literacy policies aimed at improving reading proficiency among its students. The state's approach to literacy education focuses on evidence-based instruction, early intervention, and support for struggling readers. One key policy is the Montana Content Standards for English Language Arts, which outlines the skills and knowledge that students need to develop in order to be successful readers, including phonics, fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension.

Montana provides training and support for educators in evidence-based literacy practices, such as balanced literacy instruction, explicit instruction in phonics, and the use of formative assessments to guide instruction. The state has established the Montana Office of Public Instruction's Literacy Office to provide guidance and support to educators and promote evidence-based literacy practices.

Montana uses a statewide assessment, the Montana Comprehensive Assessment System (MontCAS), to monitor student progress in reading and identify areas where additional support is needed. The state's Response to Intervention (RTI) framework provides a systematic approach to identifying and supporting struggling readers, with tiered levels of intervention based on student needs.

The Montana Office of Public Instruction also partners with local organizations and agencies to promote literacy development through initiatives such as the Montana Early Literacy and Learning Model (MELLM) and the Montana Comprehensive Literacy State Development (CLSD) Grant. These programs aim to support literacy development among students and families, particularly those in low-income communities. Additionally, the state has established the Montana Early Learning Standards, which focuses on promoting early literacy development among young children in the state.

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Montana Student Score Gaps:

  • This represents no significant change from the state’s 2019 average score.

  • Data are not reported for Black students in 2022, because reporting standards were not met.

  • In 2022, Hispanic students had an average score that was not significantly different from that of White students. Data was not reported for Hispanic students in 1998, because reporting standards were not met.

  • In 2022, male students in Montana had an average score that was lower than that of female students by 9 points.

  • In 2022, students who were eligible for the National School Lunch Program (NSLP) had an average score that was 24 points lower than that for students who were not eligible. This performance gap was not significantly different from that in 1998 (21 points).

Information from the  NAEP website for 2022 4th grade reading scores.




These organizations are committed to promoting evidence-based reading practices, providing professional development opportunities for educators, and supporting students in developing strong reading skills.

Montana Office of Public Instruction

Montana State Reading Council


Montana Council of Teachers of English

The International Dyslexia Association - Montana Branch

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