Many schools do not understand dyslexia or have staff trained to evaluate for dyslexia. While schools may have dyslexia programs, they are often weak or not available especially at the middle and high school levels, although they are required. Many students with dyslexia are served in special education programs which may or may not be appropriate.
In Texas and a few other states, schools are required to have specific programs for students with dyslexia that are not part of the special education program. The Dyslexia Handbook: Procedures Concerning Dyslexia and Related Disorders is at http://tea.texas.gov/academics/dyslexia/
If you’ve heard the term dyslexia and aren’t sure what it means, you’re not alone. People tend to have a lot of questions about dyslexia. Is it a general term that covers many kinds of learning issues? How is it different from (or the same as) a specific learning disability? The answers here can help you develop a better understanding of dyslexia.
What exactly is dyslexia?
Dyslexia is a brain-based condition. It causes difficulty with reading, spelling, writing and sometimes speaking. In people with dyslexia, the brain has trouble recognizing or processing certain types of information. This can include matching letter sounds and symbols (such as the letter b making the buh sound) and blending them together to make words.
Dyslexia, dyscalculia, dysgraphia—many different learning issues fall under the umbrella of “learning disabilities.” This video from the National Center for Learning Disabilities describes them. It also explains what issues don’t fall under that umbrella.
Reading problems are the most common type of academic underachievement. Especially for students with dyslexia, learning to read and write can be exceedingly difficult. Dyslexia and related reading and language difficulties are the result of neurobiological variations, but they can be treated with effective instruction.
Effective instruction is instruction that is tied to student needs, as determined by diagnostic testing and evaluation. It is instruction delivered by knowledgeable and skilled individuals in a step-by-step fashion that leads to the achievement of desired outcomes or goals by targeting a student’s relative strengths and strengthening his or her relative weaknesses. Effective instruction also requires the ongoing monitoring of student progress to determine the ultimate course and duration of the instruction.
Children with dyslexia, ADHD and other kinds of learning and attention issues are as smart as their peers. But without the right support, many fall behind academically and struggle socially. They’re more likely to repeat a grade, get in trouble at school or with the law, drop out and struggle as adults to find work. But this downward spiral can be prevented.
This data-intensive report form NCLD provides insights into the challenges facing the 1 in 5 as well as specifics on how to improve outcomes in school, work and the community.
NCLD’s The State of LD: Understanding Learning and Attention Issues is available online at http://www.ncld.org/the-state-of-learning-disabilities-understanding-the-1-in-5