Simply put, Dyslexia is an often inherited language based learning disorder that makes it extremely difficult to read, spell, and write in your native language, in spite of average intelligence. It varies in degree of severity.
It is not caused by lack of motivation, problems with vision or hearing, weak instruction, or environmental limitations. It is a lifelong disability, but can respond to timely and appropriate intervention. (from the International Dyslexia Association)
The recently passed Dyslexia Law in New Jersey provides:
- A screening by the first semester of grade 2 for students who show possible signs of Dyslexia
- A referral for a more complete evaluation if the screening shows indicators of Dyslexia
- The development of interventions if the evaluation confirms reading problems
This law does not state what will be done to help students who begin show reading problems beyond grade 2.
While this legislation is an excellent beginning, it will not provide sufficient or appropriate help for all students.
Some students will need more!
Research shows that the best time to provide appropriate assistance is during kindergarten and first grade.
It is generally easier to provide effective instruction earlier than intensive remediation later.
It may even eliminate the need for special education services.