SCORES: Don’t leave dyslexics behind

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Were you interested reading the editorial about state test scores? School readiness is critically important, yet there is no mention of students with dyslexia, which affects one in five people. Next time you are out, think of the loss of 20% of the people around you. No one “gets over” dyslexia, but there are a number of strategies that can assist students if the teachers have been given the proper training.

Idaho is the only Western state that does not have a dyslexia-specific law to protect and assist these students. Dyslexics are covered under Americans with Disabilities Act, but that only helps if parents know enough to advocate for them. Dyslexia is genetic.

The editor shows his thinking with, “The youngest kids aren’t being taught or encouraged to read at home.” How many things do you do, dear Editor, which you are unable? Indisputably, the broader a student’s exposure to literature, the broader his or her vocabulary will grow. That does not, however, translate into their ability to read, as reading is beyond word calling.

Famous dyslexic Steve Jobs created fonts on computers. He created them because he was not interested in college academia, instead focusing on calligraphy. Although Jobs never finished college, he gave a commencement address at Stanford that is embedded in all Apple products. Dyslexia has nothing to do with intelligence.

Teaching all of our students does not take away from our brightest academic students. Rather it enriches our schools all lives. It takes a different delivery so that ALL students learn and enrich our community!

KAY RICE, M.Ed.

Hayden

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