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Laws and Regulations
Chapter 12 of the Iowa Administrative Code describes English-language arts instruction at grade levels 1–12, which includes the following:
12.5(3) Elementary program, Grades 1–6.
a. English-language arts. English-language arts instruction shall include the following communication processes: speaking; listening; reading; writing; viewing; and visual expression and nonverbal communication. Instruction shall incorporate language learning and creative, logical, and critical thinking. The following shall be taught: oral and written composition; communication processes and skills, including handwriting and spelling; literature; creative dramatics; and reading.
12.5(4) Junior-high program, Grades 7 and 8.
a. English-language arts. Same definition as in 12.5(3) “a” with the exclusion of handwriting.
12.5(5) High school program, Grades 9–12.
a. English-language arts (six units). English-language arts instruction shall include the following communication processes: speaking; listening; reading; writing; viewing; and visual expression and nonverbal communication. Instruction shall incorporate language learning and creative, logical, and critical thinking. The program shall encompass communication processes and skills; written composition; speech; debate; American, English, and world literature; creative dramatics; and journalism.
A team made up of English Language Arts (ELA)/Literacy educators representing AEA literacy consultants, K–12 teachers, teacher leaders, administrators, and college and university specialists in ELA/literacy teacher preparation.
View the legal requirements of this statute.
Literacy Teaching Endorsements
In Iowa, the Iowa Board of Educational Examiners handles teacher licensure. For the requirements for teaching endorsements in literacy, use the following links:
- K–8 English/Language Arts
- 5–12 English/Language Arts
- 5–12 Language Arts - All
- 5–12 Journalism
- K–8 Reading
- 5–12 Reading
- K–8 Speech Communications/Theatre
- 5–12 Speech Communications/Theatre
- K–12 Reading Specialist
- 5–8 Middle School Language Arts
Visit the Iowa Core website to view the statewide academic expectations for all K–12 students in the area of literacy.
Literacy Standards Review (2016)
The State Board of Education adopted minimal revisions to the Iowa literacy standards, which underwent a formal review process. Recommendations by the Literacy Standards Review Team provide clarity and eliminate redundancy within the current standards.
Find resources in the areas of ELA/literacy instruction, assessment, and professional development that support all students in meeting Iowa academic standards.
Provides guidance for literacy instruction in schools by conducting research in practical settings to evaluate the effectiveness of literacy practices.