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Review of Foundational Literacy Skills Plans


September 2021

Authors: Kim Potts and Dana Brimm

Legislative Brief

Foundational literacy skills instruction is an evidence-based method of teaching students to read that includes phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension. The Tennessee Literacy Success Act, passed by the Tennessee General Assembly in 2021, requires this type of instruction to be the primary form of English language arts (ELA) instruction to students in grades K-3. The act required each school district and public charter school to develop a foundational literacy skills plan (FLSP) for students in grades K-5 and submit it to the Tennessee Department of Education (TDOE) by June 1, 2021. School districts and charter schools are required to submit a revised plan every three years beginning July 1, 2024.

The act required the State Board of Education (SBE), in consultation with TDOE, to establish the guidelines and requirements for the FLSPs. The act requires the Comptroller of the Treasury to review the foundational literacy skills plans submitted to TDOE to ensure the plans comply with the requirements established in law and the rules set by SBE. This brief represents the first review of FLSPs by the Comptroller – other reviews will follow in three-year intervals.