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North Carolina public school students are assessed through end-of-grade tests in reading and mathematics in grades 3-8; science assessments in grades 5 and 8; English II, Biology and Math I (formerly Algebra I/Integrated Math I). Final decisions about student promotion are made by local school principals under North Carolina public school law. 

Students also take the ACT college admissions exam as high school juniors.

Third grade students who do not pass the end-of-grade assessment for reading are subject to additional requirements under the state's Read to Achieve law. To review how this law works, please go to NC Read to Achieve Guidebook (pdf, 1.9mb).