Eanes ISD staff work diligently to identify and support students with dyslexia through specific, research-based instruction and appropriate accommodations.
As the state and international definitions explain, dyslexia manifests itself differently. Based on assessment data, specialized dyslexia intervention is delivered and student progress is monitored. Meanwhile, in the regular classroom, accommodations are in place to support mastery of grade level content. Parents who are concerned about dyslexia should consult with the classroom teacher, contact the Tier II dyslexia specialist on campus or talk the campus counselor to explore the possibility and take next steps accordingly.
Additional information from the Texas Education Agency can be found at: http://tea.texas.gov/
- Concern must be considered by the campus SST and each case must be examined on an individual basis. The SST should include parents in discussions and decision making.
- The SST must document the data they have considered in making their decision as well as their consideration of the following factors:
- How the student’s reading difficulty affects the student’s learning
- The significance of the gap between current and expected performance
- Additional factors that may further exacerbate challenges learning to read
- Anticipated rates of improvement that will assist the team in making further recommendations
- The SST should examine available data to decide 1) if an evaluation for dyslexia is appropriate AND 2) whether the student should be evaluated by the general education dyslexia program or by special education*
- An evaluation by the general education dyslexia program is appropriate if the data leads the SST to think that the general education dyslexia program can meet the student’s needs. If this path is recommended by the SST, the campus dyslexia specialist does the testing and the 504 Committee makes the decision that the student is a student with dyslexia and decides the student’s dyslexia services and accommodations.
- An evaluation for special education is appropriate if the data leads the SST to think that the student will need specially designed instruction designed to meet the student’s unique needs and special education related services. If this path is recommended, the campus LSSP is responsible for conducting the evaluation according to special education guidelines and the ARD committee makes the determination as to whether or not the student has dyslexia and plans the student’s program.
- The SST must provide the parent with prior written notice of their decision.
*NOTE: If at anytime in the process the parent specifically requests an evaluation for special education, the SST must still consider which path is appropriate for the student based on the available data. However, the SST must follow the procedures outlined in the “Parental Request for a Full and Individual Evaluation (FIE) through Special Education.”
- District programs for dyslexia, whether housed in general education or special education, meet the guidelines for dyslexia instruction found in “The Dyslexia Handbook” published by TEA.
- The district has adopted the Wilson Reading Program as its general education program for serving students who are having challenges in learning to read due to dyslexia. A student who is making adequate progress in that program and does not need additional modifications or additions to that instruction may be appropriately served through the general education dyslexia program/504. (The Dyslexia Handbook; “To the Administrator Addressed” letter from TEA dated June 6, 2018)
- Students who need specially designed instruction that is tailored to their unique needs and challenges in learning to read or need additional academic supports because of their challenges in reading or other factors identified by the evaluation may be more appropriately served through special education. IDEA defines specially designed instruction as “adapting, as appropriate to the needs of an eligible child under this part, the content, methodology or delivery of instruction (i) to address the unique needs of the child that result from the child’s disability; and (ii) to ensure access of the child to the general curriculum, so that the child can meet the educational standards within the jurisdiction of the public agency that apply to all children.” (Section 300.39(b)(3) of Title 34, Code of Federal Regulations [CFR])
- If a student is making appropriate progress in the general education Wilson Reading Program and is able to access general education curriculum with accommodations specified in their 504 plan, it is appropriate for them to continue receiving dyslexia instruction through the general education program.
- If at anytime, the student is not making sufficient progress in the reading program or they appear to need additional supports and services designed to meet their unique needs, the 504 Committee should make a referral for a special education evaluation.