What is Dyslexia?
Dyslexia is a specific learning disability. People with dyslexia have difficulty separating the individual sounds in words. This makes learning to read and spell words difficult. It also makes it difficult to read quickly and smoothly.
What Dyslexia is Not
People with dyslexia see things as other people do. They do not see things backwards or reverse letters, as is commonly thought.
- Between 15-20% of people have some characteristics of dyslexia.
- Dyslexia runs in families
- Dyslexia occurs in all languages
Signs of Possible Dyslexia
- Delayed speaking in early childhood
- Finding the right word
- Reading words
- Learning letters and sounds
- Reading quickly and smoothly
- Memorizing facts, including math facts
What should I do if I suspect my child may have dyslexia?
Email or call your child’s teacher and/or the school counselor or principal and share your suspicions.
Your school will contact you to schedule a Child Find meeting within 10 days. At this meeting the team, which includes the parent(s), will decide whether or not to evaluate to look for a learning disability.
Many students with dyslexia will benefit from the use of assistive technology. Assistive technology includes speech-to-text software, text-to-speech software, word prediction software, grammar check software, audio books, and on-line graphic organizers. These tools allow some students with dyslexia to use their comprehension and creative and critical thinking skills without the barriers they may experience with written text.
Google Read and Write
- Text-to-speech for words, phrases, passages, or entire documents
- Highlights the words being read to allow for the student to follow along.
- Word prediction
- Collects highlights from multiple documents for research
- Create voice notes
- Text and Picture dictionaries
Accommodations to Consider
Accommodations should always be based on the particular needs of the student.
- Read aloud or access to audio versions of text
- Extended time for assignments
- Copies of notes provided after student attempt
- No penalty for spelling errors (except on spelling tests or final drafts)
- Speech to text software
- Graphic organizers for comprehension and writing
- Preferential seating
- Clarify written directions
- Visual prompts and reminders
- Audio and digital (and print and large text) versions of novels and textbooks
Child Find Process
If, someone suspects a disability and makes a referral. This can be as simple as an email or phone call.
Then, within 10 days: Child Find Meeting: A team (parent(s) and school staff) meet to review the referral and data to decide whether or not to evaluate.
If, the team decides not to evaluate, the parent will receive an explanation of the reasons behind the decision and a copy of the Procedural Safeguards.
If, the team decides to evaluate for a disability, the parent will receive a copy of the Procedural Safeguards. A parent will need to consent to evaluation of the child.
Then, within 65 days or the referral: Eligibility Meeting: The parent will be provided with the evaluation report at least 2 business days before the eligibility meeting. The team (parent(s) and school staff) will meet to determine whether or not the child is eligible as a child with a disability in need of special education.
If, the team decides the child is not eligible. The parent will receive an explanation of the reasons behind the decision and a copy of the Procedural Safeguards.
If, the team (school staff and parent(s)) decides the child is eligible. An IEP will be developed within 30 calendar days. The parent will receive a copy of the IEP at the IEP meeting or within 10 calendar days and a copy of the Procedural Safeguards.