Does your dyslexic child love to run? Check out this story about a Portland runner who was diagnosed with dyslexia at the age of five. Now, he sits on the board of the Oregon chapter of the IDA and is raising funds to help ensure that every child diagnosed with dyslexia receives the support needed to succeed. Thank you, Jared Blank!
Diana King’s life-long passion for teaching dyslexic students and advocating on their behalf will be forever remembered, appreciated & celebrated. Personally, I will always fondly remember the brief walk, arm-in-arm, I took with her at an IDA Convention to help her return to her room late in the evening. I knew it was an honor at the time to be chatting with her and feel incredibly fortunate to have been in her presence. – Elissa Aten, PC READS President & Co-Founder
Wonderful news! Early identification of struggling readers, followed by effective intervention, is a key to improving literacy rates in our nation.
EXCERPT: The initiative also hopes to shift the conversation about poor literacy away from third-grade reading scores toward younger students. Officials believe early intervention can have the most profound effect on turning students into proficient readers. “If we wait until the third grade, that is too late. . . . You missed a huge opportunity to help them before then,” said Elizabeth City, executive director of Reach Every Reader and a senior lecturer at the Harvard Graduate School of Education.
News out of South Dakota: “The department’s Office of Civil Rights is looking at whether the district failed to identify students who have dyslexia or other disabilities.”
This Q&A, issued by the US Department of Education on December 7, 2017, is an important document to read and understand if your child is on an IEP. We suggest printing a copy and adding it to your student’s binder. We will also put a link on our website to it for future reference.
A few key points:
With the decision in Endrew, F., the Court clarified that for all students, including those performing at grade level and those unable to perform at grade level, a school must offer an IEP that is “reasonably calculated to enable a child to make progress appropriate in light of the child’s circumstances.” This standard is different from, and more demanding than, the “merely more than de minimis” test applied by the Tenth Circuit. As the Court stated, “[t]he goals may differ, but every child should have the chance to meet challenging objectives.”
What does “reasonably calculated” mean?
The “reasonably calculated” standard recognizes that developing an appropriate IEP requires a prospective judgment by the IEP Team. Generally, this means that school personnel will make decisions that are informed by their own expertise, the progress of the child, the child’s potential for growth, and the views of the child’s parents. IEP Team members should consider how special education and related services, if any, have been provided to the child in the past, including the effectiveness of specific instructional strategies and supports and services with the student.
What actions should IEP Teams take if a child is not making progress at the level the IEP Team expected?
If a child is not making progress at the level the IEP Team expected, despite receiving all the services and supports identified in the IEP, the IEP Team must meet to review and revise the IEP if necessary, to ensure the child is receiving appropriate interventions, special education and related services and supplementary aids and services, and to ensure the IEP’s goals are individualized and ambitious.
If you missed this NPR report on the 1A Show earlier this week, you can listen to it here. This is a follow-up to the recent investigation by American Public Media (APM) revealing that “across the country, public schools are denying children proper treatment and often failing to identify them with dyslexia in the first place.”
“The APM findings also show that the way schools handle recognizing and educating students with dyslexia could have implications for how all children are taught to read. We look at how one special needs population affects early childhood education and literacy rates across the board.”
Excellent article including personal stories, history of the “reading wars” and reasons that changes to teacher training are needed. Links to the related podcasts are included.
“In 1997, Congress called for a National Reading Panel to determine how best to teach reading. It reviewed more than 100,000 studies and in 2000, the panel published a 449-page report that was a crushing blow to the whole language movement. There was no evidence to show whole language worked and lots of evidence that teaching children the relationship among sounds, letters and spelling patterns improves reading achievement.
This is for all kids, not just those with dyslexia.”
Excellent audio documentary about dyslexia – including history (have you heard about the “Reading Wars?”), advocacy work and personal stories. Definitely worth an hour of your time! Please share widely.
“There are proven ways to help people with dyslexia learn to read, and a federal law that’s supposed to ensure schools provide kids with help. But across the country, public schools are denying children proper treatment and often failing to identify them with dyslexia in the first place.”
Detroit’s new School Superintendent,Nikolai Vitti, shares his background and passion for helping students with dyslexia.
EXCERPT: Among the worst moments of elementary school came when his teachers would pick a child, one by one, to read a passage from a book. “I remember sweating and thinking, ‘Oh, my God, please do not pick me.’ And then having to read and kids laughing.”
“Time and again, administrators, reading specialists, and classroom teachers sang the praises of Fundations, a curriculum developed by Wilson.”
Implementing Wilson Fundations in the PCSD is part of the district’s current Dyslexia Initiative. This year, Fundations was introduced at McPolin Elementary School in K-2. The goal is to roll it out to our other 3 elementary schools next year. An Implementation Plan is scheduled to be presented at the May 16th Board Meeting. Read the article below about success at a PA school.
Exciting new program from Wilson Fundations for Pre-K!
“The Title I elementary school, along with 74 other pre-kindergarten classes throughout Greensboro’s sprawling Guilford County school district, served as a pilot site for the Fundations Pre-K Activity Set during the 2014-2015 school year. The district has been using it ever since.”
“The Guilford County Schools’ pre-k program currently serves more than 1,200 students in 75 classrooms at 51 elementary schools. In addition to the Fundations pre-k set, the district provides Fundations K-3 in all 69 of its elementary schools.”
Excellent news out of the U.S.Supreme Court today – and a unanimous decision!!
“It cannot be right that the IDEA generally contemplates grade-level advancement for children with disabilities who are fully integrated in the regular classroom, but is satisfied with barely more than de minimis progress for children who are not,” read the opinion, signed by Chief Justice John Roberts.
Roberts went on:
When all is said and done, a student offered an educational program providing “merely more than de minimis” progress from year to year can hardly be said to have been offered an education at all. For children with disabilities, receiving instruction that aims so low would be tantamount to “sitting idly . . . awaiting the time when they were old enough to ‘drop out.’”
Check out what is happening in Colorado Springs!
Short clip for those following the nomination of Betsy DeVos for Secretary of Education.
How much of a benefit do schools have to provide kids with IEPs? That’s the question at the heart of the Endrew F. vs. Douglas County School District case, which was argued today in front of the Supreme Court. We’re coming to you now from Washington, DC, discussing this important case and what it might mean for your child with an IEP.