South Carolina Department of Education Approves Curriculum Associates’ i-Ready® Diagnostic for its Adoption List of Formative Assessments

The South Carolina Department of Education (SCDE) recently approved Curriculum Associates’ i-Ready Diagnostic for its Adoption List of Formative Assessments. The award-winning program, which was also named an Approved Literacy Universal Screener by the SCDE earlier this year, was chosen to support educators across the state as they work to improve student achievement in both reading and mathematics in accordance with individual district improvement plans. Today, the i-Ready program serves more than eight million students and approximately 25 percent of all K–8 students in the United States.

“One thing that really sets i-Ready apart is it provides a single online solution for both assessing students’ unique needs and providing personalized instruction,” said Rob Waldron, CEO of Curriculum Associates. “Now, with both of these recent approvals, educators in South Carolina can use our program as a formative assessment and as part of their literacy screening. This will both save educators valuable time as they no longer need to administer multiple assessments and provide them the much-needed data to chart individualized learning paths for students.” 

To be included on the Adoption List of Formative Assessments, an assessment must undergo a comprehensive two-stage approval process demonstrating that it satisfies professional measurement standards and aligns with the South Carolina College- and Career- Ready Standards. During the first stage, a panel of measurement experts specifically reviews assessments based on set evaluation criteria developed jointly by the Education Oversight Committee and the SCDE to determine if the products positively impact student achievement. During the second stage, two committees of curriculum specialists – one for English language arts and one for mathematics – evaluate assessment items as they relate to the state standards.

Earlier this year, SCDE also named i-Ready Diagnostic an Approved Literacy Universal Screener for the 2020-21 school year. With the approval, districts and charter schools across the state can screen all kindergarten and first grade students three times a year for potential reading difficulties, including dyslexia, using i-Ready. This is done as part of districts’ implementation of Multi-Tiered System of Supports (MTSS) which addresses the needs of the whole child – academically, behaviorally, socially, and emotionally – through a holistic and personalized system of learning.

i-Ready makes the promise of differentiated instruction a practical reality for K–12 teachers and students. It combines powerful assessments and rich insights with effective and engaging instruction in reading and mathematics to address students’ individual needs.

The Diagnostic provides educators with actionable criterion-referenced and normative data to deliver impactful, equitable learning experiences. Teachers administer the Diagnostic at the beginning of the school year to chart a course for their instruction and to personalize i-Ready instructional paths. A midyear and end-of-year Diagnostic helps students and teachers measure growth and have data chats. Teacher-led and personalized instruction continues throughout the year to help students address their learning gaps and access grade-level learning.

“The approval of i-Ready as a formative assessment by the South Carolina State Department of Education is good news for the educators and students of our state,” said Dr. Terry O. Pruitt, chief academic officer of Spartanburg School District Seven in Spartanburg, SC. “The i-Ready assessment is aligned with the SC College and Career Ready Standards which provides an accurate and reliable picture of where students are performing in regards to meeting the state standards. i-Ready also creates an individualized learning path for each student and includes the resources the teachers need to plan and drive their instruction.”

“Compared to previous assessments, our teachers and administrators find i-Ready’s data extremely easy to navigate, helpful in determining students’ specific needs, and valuable in monitoring progress towards mastery of state standards,” said Jill Brady, director of instructional services at Spartanburg District Five Schools in Duncan, SC. “We also see a direct correlation between our students’ performance on i-Ready and their achievement on SC Ready.”

To learn more about i-Ready and the recent approvals by the SCDE, visit

The American Consortium for Equity in Education, publisher of the "Equity & Access" journal, celebrates and connects the educators, associations, community partners and industry leaders who are working to solve problems and create a more equitable environment for historically underserved pre K-12 students throughout the United States.

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