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Dyslexia: A Brief for Educators, Parents, and Legislators

The purpose of this technical assistance paper is to briefly describe what is currently known about dyslexia, focusing particularly on methods of early identification, prevention, and remedial instruction.   

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Scientific research has contributed substantially to our understanding of dyslexia and other forms of reading difficulty over the past 40 years. We now have a widely agreed upon definition, and we also have assessments that can accurately identify children with dyslexia as early as kindergarten. We also understand many of the instructional conditions that must be in place to prevent the emergence of the early word-level reading difficulties that are characteristic of students with dyslexia. Further, we have demonstrations from successful schools and districts that illustrate ways to provide these conditions on a large scale. We also have research-based knowledge about the conditions required to accelerate the development of reading skills in older students with dyslexia, although the nature and duration of instruction required to “normalize” the reading ability of these students is not currently known. We clearly have enough knowledge about “what works” for these children to apply it on a large scale. The most pressing problems at present are related to the twin challenges of implementing high-quality initial reading instruction in every classroom and identifying the resources and personnel to provide intensive reading interventions for all students that need them in Florida schools. Within this broad set of challenges, a shortage of highly skilled intervention specialists and a lack of financial resources to support the additional instructional time and smaller instructional groups required by many students may be the most difficult.

Additional Info

  • Resource Topic: Dyslexia
  • Source: Florida Center for Reading Research
  • Year of Publication: 2008
  • Resource Type: file: .PDF