News from Oklahoma.
Some states are leading the way in providing teacher training based in the science of reading. Let’s hope more follow this path!
Based upon a United States Court of Appeals case out of Detroit, MI.
“We recognize that the Constitution provides a fundamental right to a basic minimum education.”
Thank you, Susan Spencer & CBS Sunday Morning for your report this morning on dyslexia!
SUMMARY: “Yale researchers who have studied hundreds of kindergartners for nearly 40 years say one in five was dyslexic. But perhaps their most important finding: There is no link at all between dyslexia and intelligence. Susan Spencer reports on efforts to help those with dyslexia “crack the code,” from students at a Louisiana school catering to dyslexic children, to a new law to help the high percentage of prison inmates who have dyslexia.”
The ILA and the IDA have not always seen eye-to-eye and there was particular debate over the ILA’s 2016 Research Advisory on Dyslexia (link below). So, we are happy to see that the ILA has published a brief (link below) on the importance of explicit and systematic phonics instruction.
The question of whether to include phonics instruction has been resolved.
The answer is yes. Although phonics can be taught in different ways, research supports instruction that is explicit and systematic.
Very often, a child’s diagnosis leads a parent to realize that he is also dyslexic. Read more about “Shark Tank’s” Barbara Corcoran in the article below or listen to the podcast (linked in article).
EXCERPT: Struggling with insecurity at an early age, Corcoran could not read or write until she was in third grade. “I’ve wrestled with letters and numbers my whole life… My biggest fear all day long was that I would be called on to read out loud,” Corcoran said in her recent podcast on her series “Business Unusual.” It was only when her son Tom was diagnosed with dyslexia when he was in second grade that Corcoran realized she also had the disorder.
Congratulations to Drs. Sally and Bennett Shaywitz on their well-deserved recognition for their work in the field of dyslexia! The Yale Center for Dyslexia and Creativity is one of our favorite resources!
“At a recent gala event at the Liberty Science Center in New Jersey, Drs. Sally and Bennett Shaywitz were presented with LSC’s “Genius Award” for their groundbreaking work on dyslexia. To begin the presentation of the award, the audience was shown a specially-commissioned video that celebrates the lives and careers of the Shaywitzes. ” (Click on the original article to see the video.)
NPR coverage on the college admissions scandal.
Excerpt: “This hurts every individual with a learning disability,” Beth McGaw, the president of the Learning Disabilities Association of America said in a statement. At many levels of education, students with disabilities — such as dyslexia or ADHD — can receive extra time on standardized tests. It’s one of a number of ways that make tests accessible to all students.
Written by David Flink, Founder of Eye to Eye and and also the author of “Thinking Differently,” a wonderful book on our resource list.
EXCERPT: I join the chorus condemning the abuse of the college admissions process and want to shine a light on how this scandal mischaracterizes the journey of students with very real learning disabilities. The parents and test-taking coaches who were able to manipulate the system to give extra time on tests to students who don’t have learning disabilities acted unethically—and they’ve done a considerable disservice to the 1 in 5 students with learning disabilities across this country.
Dyslexia Training Institute’s Tracy Block-Zaretsky was a guest on Good Morning San Diego to speak about Gov. Newsom’s screening plans.
California’s Governor, Gavin Newsom, has been an advocate for early screening and identification for years. Wishing him much success in his new role!
EXCERPT: Gov. Gavin Newsom’s lifelong struggle with dyslexia makes his proposal to screen little kids for developmental disorders a personal mission. California’s new governor wasn’t diagnosed with the reading disability until he was in the fifth grade.
Important advocacy work happening at the national level!
EXCERPT: The First Step Act will formally define dyslexia as “an unexpected difficulty in reading for an individual who has the intelligence to be a much better reader, most commonly caused by a difficulty in the phonological processing (the appreciation of the individual sounds of spoken language), which affects the ability of an individual to speak, read, and spell.” The bill requires the U.S. attorney general to incorporate an evidence-based, low-cost, readily available dyslexia screening program into the new risk and needs assessment system, including by screening for dyslexia during the prisoner intake process and each periodic risk reassessment of a prisoner. It also requires the U.S. attorney general to incorporate dyslexia treatment programs into recidivism reduction programs.
A study found that 80 percent of prison inmates at the state prison in Huntsville, Texas, were functionally illiterate and 48 percent were dyslexic.
This article is based upon author Emily Hanford’s audio documentary for APM Reports, “Hard Words: Why Aren’t Kids Being Taught to Read?”
Excerpt: “There is no excuse for this. Colleges of education have to start requiring that their faculties teach the science of reading. Children’s futures depend on it.”
Thank you to our PCSD K-3 teachers who are putting the science of reading back into the classrooms through Wilson Fundations!
What can you do over the UEA break? PLEASE take the time to read or listen to this article & the follow-up we will post, too. PC READS advocated for changes to our PCSD elementary reading curriculum for several years based upon the science of reading & is proud to be a partner on the initiative that brought Wilson Fundations to our classrooms! And, our Professional Development Grants are supporting educators as they learn more about the science of reading.
A FEW EXCERPTS FROM THE ARTICLE:
By some estimates, one-third of America’s struggling readers are from college-educated families.
But without explicit and systematic phonics instruction, many children won’t ever learn to read very well.
“There are thousands of studies,” said Louisa Moats, an education consultant and researcher who has been teaching and studying reading since the 1970s. “This is the most studied aspect of human learning.”
There is no debate at this point among scientists that reading is a skill that needs to be explicitly taught by showing children the ways that sounds and letters correspond. “It’s so accepted in the scientific world that if you just write another paper about these fundamental facts and submit it to a journal they won’t accept it because it’s considered settled science,” Moats said.
You can find schools and school districts across the United States that are trying to change reading instruction the way Bethlehem has, but according to Moats, ill-informed, ineffective reading instruction is the norm. “The gap between science-based ideas and practices and those most often used in our classrooms remains very wide and persistent,” she wrote in a recent article.