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A much-needed tool that parents of children with O. Douglas Riley teaches parents how to recognize the signs, understand the attitudes, and modify the behavior Digging up Texas: A Guide to the Archeology. Take a guided tour of more than 15, years of life in Texas Mr. Marcom has authored a volume that makes the incredibly diverse archaeological record of Texas accessible to interested laypersons and beginning avocational archaeologists.

Student with dyslexia perseveres, receives prestigious scholarship

Dyslexia In Adults. Author Kathleen Nosek offers dyslexic adults a unique approach that gets to the heart of Growing Great Vegetables in the Heartland. Dispensing hard-won advice from years of firsthand experience and promoting a practical, organic approach, this Dispensing hard-won advice from years of firsthand experience and promoting a practical, organic approach, this invaluable guide offers essential information to beginners and veteran gardeners of the Great Plains. De Valenzuela, J. Examining educational equity: Revisiting the disproportional representation of minority students in special education.

Exceptional Children, 72 4 , Cole, C. Academic progress of students across inclusive and traditional settings. Mental Retardation, 42 2 , ; Waldron, N. The effects of an inclusive school program on students with mild and severe learning disabilities. Exceptional Children, 64 3 ; Baker, E. The effects of inclusion on learning.

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Educational Leadership, 52 4 , Collins, K. Burr, E. Identifying and supporting English learner students with learning disabilities: Key issues in the literature and state practice REL — Klingner, J. Texas Education Agency The dyslexia handbook: Procedures concerning dyslexia and related disorders.

Austin, TX. Balu, R. Evaluation of response to intervention practices for elementary school reading NCEE Department of Education. Hernandez, D. Double jeopardy: How third-grade reading skills and poverty influence high school graduation. Casey Foundation. National Center for Learning Disabilities Shields, K. How kindergarten entry assessments are used in public schools and how they correlate with spring assessments REL — NCLD on Facebook. NCLD Twitter. Search for:. Not all children with learning and attention issues are identified in school as having a disability. In the U.

Department of Education USED issued two letters reminding states that intervention strategies cannot be used to delay or deny evaluation of students suspected of having a disability. For example, some students perform well in some content areas and not others, or they may score too high on assessments used to determine eligibility for special education. However, in , USED reminded states that children with learning disabilities cannot be found ineligible for special education solely because they scored above a particular cut score established by state policy.

This can lead to low self-esteem, school aversion and lost potential. The early signs of learning and attention issues often go unnoticed. Learning and attention issues affect children from all income levels, but low-income children are more likely to be identified as having SLD. In particular, environmental factors may play a role: Studies indicate that poverty increases the risk of low birthweight, exposure to lead and other risk factors associated with disabilities.

Students who experience four or more ACEs are 32 times more likely to be diagnosed with learning or behavioral challenges. Income level Children in low-income families are more likely to be diagnosed with ADHD than children in higher-income families. In —, Insurance may play a key role here. In —, children with public insurance had the highest rate of ADHD diagnoses Gender Several studies have found that boys are more than twice as likely to have been diagnosed with ADHD as girls. The CDC reported that in —, The reason for the gender difference in the prevalence of ADHD and several other neurodevelopmental disorders is not fully understood.

Some but not all of the difference may be due to girls showing signs of ADHD that can appear different than in boys —and that are easier to overlook. Age A large-scale study in Taiwan concluded that the youngest students in each grade were more likely to be diagnosed with ADHD than the oldest students—findings that are consistent with similar studies in the U.

The study found that relative age increased the risk of ADHD diagnosis among preschoolers and grade-schoolers. Birth month had less of an impact on ADHD diagnosis among adolescents. English language learners with SLD are overidentified in some states and underidentified in others. Even with the screening results, it may be hard for educators to differentiate between learning and attention issues and other reasons for underachievement.

Supporting students

Educators can intervene as soon as student struggle is recognized. Schools need to provide ready access to specialists who typically only work with students who have IEPs or plans. Targeted instruction and support are provided before a referral for special education assessment is made.

Decisions about instruction and support are based on actual classroom performance—in addition to test scores and subjective observations. All school personnel need to develop expertise in collecting, interpreting and responding to student progress data. READ Act funding for dyslexia research may help improve early intervention and identification. The law is aimed at producing new research that may lead to: Identifying dyslexia earlier Training educators to better understand and instruct students with SLD or dyslexia Curriculum and educational tools for children with SLD and dyslexia Implementing and scaling successful models of dyslexia intervention.

Third-grade reading laws are expanding the use of early intervention in many states. Other states may not screen until grade 3. All students must be screened and observed in the classroom for reading difficulties at least yearly between Pre-K and grade 3. Intervention Most laws require an improvement plan and evidence-based interventions for students demonstrating difficulty with reading. Every year from Pre-K through grade 3, struggling readers must have individual reading plans and receive intensive, evidence-based interventions based on those plans.

Parent engagement Some laws have more detailed parent engagement plans than others. Policies must include parent notification and provide opportunities for parent engagement in developing and implementing interventions. Policies must provide students with multiple methods to demonstrate reading ability.


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Retention A majority of laws allow or require students to be retained—or not promoted to fourth grade—if they have not demonstrated a certain level of proficiency by the end of third grade. Some laws allow promotion as long as the student participates in summer school or some other intervention. Some states limit retention to part of the curriculum rather than retaining a student in all areas, and require periodic reviews to determine if the student can rejoin the original grade cohort. If retention is required, it must be coupled with intensive intervention and a change in instruction.


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  4. States must make efforts to ensure that all teachers, especially third-grade teachers, are trained to provide reading instruction and can implement a full range of evidence-based strategies for struggling readers. Appropriate exemptions Most of the states that require retention will make an exception for students with IEPs and allow them to move on to fourth grade without meeting the reading proficiency requirements. Exemptions are also typically available for English language learners ELLs. Students with disabilities, as a whole, must not be exempted automatically from these policies. However, Webster and Blatchford conducted qualitative interviews with teachers and teaching assistants and found that over a third of all participants said that they had not received the training they needed to support the students with SEN in their classes.

    Both reports suggest the use of continued professional development CPD following ITT for teachers to gain a better knowledge of the subject. However, Webster and Blatchford's results suggest that this may not be happening. Consequentially, it is important to know whether teachers believed their ITT covered dyslexia sufficiently and whether they have received any CPD training in addition to their ITT. A wide range of research has investigated what people understand about dyslexia. To examine students' understanding of dyslexia, Mortimore surveyed 35 education students. Participants were asked to provide their own definition of dyslexia.

    All the definitions that participants provided focussed on the difficulties associated with dyslexia, and no strengths associated with dyslexia were mentioned. Additionally, A further study conducted by Bell, McPhillips, and Doveston compared how teachers in the United Kingdom and Ireland conceptualize dyslexia using Frith's causal model to map their data.

    This is concerning as, as mentioned previously, a large body of research into the underlying causes of dyslexia contends that phonological awareness is a prerequisite to reading difficulties Stuart, Consequently, despite the much earlier body of work put forward by Frith, suggesting that acknowledgement of all three levels is necessary for a good understanding of dyslexia, it would appear that there is a strong tendency to attribute dyslexia to the singular category of the behavioural level.

    However, some studies have reported a more holistic understanding of dyslexia in the teaching profession. For example, Regan and Woods conducted focus groups with 36 teachers and learning support assistants in the United Kingdom and asked them to provide a definition of dyslexia. The focus group participants touched upon all the levels recognized by Frith by providing biological and cognitive definitions to explain behavioural symptoms. However, the researchers noted that understanding between individuals was varied. Due to the small number of participants in this study, it is necessary to further investigate whether teachers define dyslexia across all three levels, when they are asked individually to provide a definition of dyslexia.

    They found that teachers in both countries reported several misconceptions about dyslexia. Most notably, a majority of preservice teachers surveyed stated that dyslexia is caused by issues with visual perception. Visual stress has been reported to cause reading fatigue; however, the symptoms can be somewhat overcome by the use of coloured overlays Wilkins, This suggests that although visual factors are not the cause of dyslexia, some interaction between dyslexia and visual functioning may be present.

    Furthermore, Handler and Fierson's more recent study summarized scientific literature on the topic and suggests that dyslexia and visual problems are unrelated:. Vision problems can interfere with the process of reading, but children with dyslexia or related learning disabilities have the same visual function and ocular health as children without such conditions. Currently, there is inadequate scientific evidence to support the view that subtle eye or visual problems cause or increase the severity of learning disabilities.

    Therefore, research that has explored the connection between visual stress and dyslexia has been inconclusive, meaning that it would be misleading to think of dyslexia as a visual issue. Therefore, Washburn et al. Washburn et al. This study built on earlier research by Wadlington and Wadlington who conducted a study of faculty members and students in a college of education in the United States and also found that inaccuracies were held about the direct relationship between visual issues and dyslexia.

    Both surveys asked teachers to use a Likert scale to indicate whether they thought a statement about dyslexics struggling with visual issues was true or false. As the teachers in these studies were prompted to consider the visual aspects of dyslexia, it is of interest to explore whether teachers mention the relationship between visual issues and dyslexia when they have not been promoted to do so. Conclusions from these studies suggest that teachers' knowledge of dyslexia is not consistent and is mainly based on behavioural definitions.

    Furthermore, teachers appear to hold possible inaccuracies about dyslexia. However, a relatively small number of participants were used in these studies, and although they investigated how the teachers define and understand dyslexia, they did not investigate what impacts teachers' understanding.

    The present study will address this by surveying a larger sample and exploring the relationship between understanding of dyslexia and teacher training experiences. The present study aims to investigate how teachers describe dyslexia, how the training teachers have received on dyslexia, and how this has impacted their knowledge and practice working with students with dyslexia.

    The study was operationalized using an online questionnaire. The questionnaire contained a mixture of short answer questions and semantic differential scales. It was initially piloted on 56 teachers, followed by respondent debriefing with five teachers. Items were changed and amended before a final version was sent out via email. They were asked how well dyslexia was covered on their teacher training programme and whether they had received any additional training on dyslexia.

    They were also asked how confident they feel in helping a student with dyslexia achieve success. Participants were recruited by emailing schools in England and in Wales in June and asking them to distribute the link to their teaching staff.

    The Dyslexic Scholar

    A total of 4, teachers responded to the email, and approximately 2, completed the whole survey. Emailing all schools in England and Wales allowed for a good cross section of the population to be surveyed and large numbers for data analysis. The target population was classroom teachers in primary, secondary, further education, and special schools, in England and Wales.

    Respondents that did not fall within this population determined by how demographic questions were responded to were removed from data prior to analysis. This meant that on average, 2, teachers in the target population completed the survey average due to item nonresponse. Population figures of teaching staff were obtained from the respective Departments for Education in England and Wales. The data were weighted on setting, sex, and country.

    It should be noted that the data could not be weighted by other demographic variables such as teacher type and years teaching as this population information was not available from the Departments of Education. Therefore, although the weighted data give a more accurate reflection of the population, it does not account for all factors. The descriptions were then coded using Frith's causal model in which she suggests that dyslexia can be described at three separate levels—biological, cognitive, and behavioural.

    The same coding method was applied by Bell et al. This suggests that it is an operational coding system to use when coding definitions of dyslexia. Descriptions that were coded as biological gave descriptors about the brain, neurological differences, or genetics being the cause of the dyslexic symptoms. Descriptions were coded as cognitive if they mentioned the cognitive processes associated with dyslexia, such as processing differences, issues decoding, and memory problems. Finally, descriptions that were coded as behavioural mentioned the outward symptoms of dyslexia, mainly issues with reading, writing, and spelling.

    If the participants mentioned more than one of these factors in their description, they were coded as having a combination. Furthermore, DeVaus suggests that when coding, the researcher should first look for broad groupings and themes in the first 50 to responses. From conducting this procedure, the responses seemed to show a theme that did not fit within the framework set out by Frith This was that many teachers were mentioning the visual stress aspects associated with dyslexia. First, univariate analysis was conducted on all questions. This allowed for basic familiarization with the data and to understand the number of respondents that fell within certain categories.

    Therefore, adjusted standardized residuals can be calculated which identify which cells are making a significant contribution to the result. The most mentioned descriptions were behavioural desperations, followed by participants mentioning a combination of both cognitive and behavioural descriptors.

    The Dyslexic Scholar Helping Your Child Achieve Academic Success

    The responses were then recoded in order to determine the total number of participants who mentioned or did not mention each type of descriptor. A large majority of the respondents Furthermore, it was also noted separately if the participant mentioned the visual factors associated with dyslexia.

    Four hundred twenty descriptions mentioned visual factors. This was Respondents were also asked if they had received any additional training on top of their ITT; the majority of teachers It was then interesting to investigate how training influenced whether or not a biological, cognitive, behavioural, or visual description of dyslexia was given when the respondents were asked to provide a description of dyslexia.

    Furthermore, the impact of training on the respondents' confidence working with the dyslexic students and the impact of years teaching were also investigated.

    Adjusted standardized residuals appear in parentheses beside group frequencies. NQT: newly qualified teacher. Those who said dyslexia was covered well on the ITT were more likely to use a biological or visual descriptor when describing dyslexia. However, there was no significant effect of how well dyslexia was covered in ITT and whether the respondents gave a cognitive or behavioural description of dyslexia.

    Teachers were also asked if they had received any additional training since their ITT. There was no significant effect of receiving any additional training and whether the respondents mentioned the biological or behavioural aspect associated with dyslexia. However, those that had received extra training were significantly more likely to use a cognitive descriptor and were significantly less likely to mention the visual aspects associated with dyslexia.

    Furthermore, there was a significant effect of confidence, on whether the respondents had received any additional training on dyslexia. Those that were confident were significantly more likely to have received additional training than those that were unconfident. Although there was no effect of years teaching on whether the respondent gave a biological or behavioural descriptor of dyslexia, there was a significant effect of the number of years teaching on whether a cognitive or visual descriptor was given.

    First, from looking at the descriptions that teachers gave of dyslexia, it is clear that most teachers understand dyslexia in terms of how it affects pupils at the behavioural level. This supports findings from other research that has also shown that both the lay public and teachers use behavioural descriptors when thinking about dyslexia Bell et al. It could be hypothesized that this is because teachers are more likely to witness the behavioural correlates of dyslexia in the classroom.

    However, as Frith suggests, it is important to understand all three levels of dyslexia. It would be more useful to think of dyslexia using all three levels of Frith's model. It was also noted that Therefore, nearly twice as many teachers mentioned visual factors than biological factors.

    The current survey demonstrates that teachers mention visual issues when describing dyslexia, despite research being inconclusive about this relationship. However, it is important to state that the blame here should not lie with the teachers, but rather with the education institution for not ensuring that teachers are entering the workforce with adequate knowledge of how to best help a dyslexic student.

    As the newer teachers will have completed their ITT more recently, this suggests that current teacher training is not including sufficient detail on the processing issues that are known to be associated with dyslexia. Consequentially, it is vital that teachers are aware of this so that they can help their students most effectively.