SRI, Reading Scores and Lexile Levels

Dear Parents and Guardians of LFP Students,

When you see your child’s reading “Lexile” or “STAR” score, you may wonder what that score truly means. You want your child to find a book to read at his or her appropriate level, but may not be certain how you can help to do this. Below, I will give a brief explanation of the terms above and, with that information in hand, hopefully you will feel equipped to guide your child to the books that are “just right” for him or her.

SRI and Lexile Levels (grades three – six (and at the end of grade two)) Students take the SRI (Scholastic Reading Inventory) online assessment four times a year (September, November, April, and June). SRI measures a student’s ability to understand both sentence complexity (syntax) and word difficulty (semantics). These two factors add together to make a Lexile score, which run from about BR (beginning reader) to 1700L (high level). SRI is given to students starting at the end of second grade because it reflects the complexity of reading materials those students are reading in school.

Lexile levels do not translate directly to grade levels. If a child reads a book right at his Lexile level or just below, he or she will experience success. If he or she reads above his or her Lexile level, he or she will probably experience difficulty or frustration.

Reading Counts (RC) is the book quiz component of SRI. Students take quizzes and earn points, depending on the difficulty of the book they read and if they pass the quiz.

STAR and AR (mainly used for Kindergarten – Second Grade) The STAR (Standardized Testing and Reporting) reading assessment is another online tool to measure a student’s abilities, but in this case the focus is on word difficulty and reading comprehension. The student scores at a grade level range e.g. 1.0 – 2.0 (first grade first month of the school year to second grade, first month of school).

Accelerated Reader (AR) is the book quiz component of STAR. As with RC, points are awarded for the difficulty of the book and for the acumen of the quiz taker.

LFP Believes in SRI LFP staff believes that SRI is a more accurate assessment for a child’s real-life reading abilities and adopted it in favor of STAR about seven years ago. That is why LFP administers SRI four times a year and it is also the reason that library books are marked with their Lexile levels.

STAR v. SRI Comparing STAR and SRI scores is not really possible, since they measure different capabilities in a reader. You may, however, find the following chart to be helpful in a general way:

If you found the information in this letter useful, you may want to read more in depth at the following online sources (these are the same resources I used in my research for this letter):

Lexiles: A System for Measuring Reader Ability and Text Difficulty ( exiles.pdf) 9/27/11.

STAR Reading Enterprise. ( 9/27/11 You are welcome to come in, call, or email me anytime to ask questions you may have about the reading assessments.

Sincerely yours in the successful reading future of our students,

Merrilyn Tucker

LFP  Teacher-Librarian


[email protected]

Grade Level

Lexile Range

AR Range





100 – 200


Grade 1

200 – 400


Grade 2

400 – 500


Grade 3

500 – 700


Grade 4

700 – 800


Grade 5

800 – 900


Grade 6

900 – 1000


Grade 7

1000 – 1050


Grade 8

1050 – 1100


Grade 9

1100 – 1125


Grade 10

1125 – 1140


Grade 11

1140 – 1160


Grade 12

1160 – 2000