The Wrightslaw Way

to Special Education Law and Advocacy

The Wrightslaw Way random header image

One Reason Kids Aren’t Learning to Read

05/30/08
by Sue Whitney

I can’t find any state that requires a candidate for a certified education position (reading specialist, LD specialist, special education teacher, elementary school teacher, special education director, principal, or any other position) to have training/certification in even one research based reading program.

If we were graduating and certifying people who could teach reading they would be doing it.

They may require the candidate to be well read on the subject of research based practices, but they do not require enough training/certification in a research based program to use it as it was meant to be used for instruction.

Some teaching colleges will grant college credit if a student gets training in a research based program outside of the college. A few offer training at the college as an elective. But it is not required for graduation or state certification.

We should not be surprised that people untrained to accomplish the goal are unable to accomplish the goal. If we were graduating and certifying people who could teach reading they would be doing it. What we are producing are people who can help a child learn to read as long as the child does not need direct systematic instruction in a research based methodology.

Teachers are paying good money for a college education that does not prepare them to accomplish the job they will be hired to do. They have enough training to teach some of the children to read. To me, that is a piece of institutionalized discrimination that we have to change. We need to use our public money for staff that can teach all the children to read, not just the easy ones.

Print Friendly

Tags:   · · 23 Comments

Leave a Reply

23 Comments on "One Reason Kids Aren’t Learning to Read"


joan
01/02/2014

“They may require the candidate to be well read on the subject of research based practices, but they do not require enough training/certification in a research based program to use it as it was meant to be used for instruction ” This broad statement is not accurate.. Pre-service teachers in teacher education learn specialized methods for teaching reading that is contingent on many different learners strengths & deficits. They must know what to do in response to a child’s needs. This means they need to know how using several research based approaches. As such, teachers who go through special education, elementary education, and reading certification all receive explicit instruction in research based reading.

Morning
01/18/2012

Sue, I was thinking are we putting too much on teachers? As I have sat in classroom over the years–I am fully sure general education teachers can do it–yes trainmg is needed..but even with differentiated instruction, can real education teachers do it all. The emphasis is onteacher training but should it be more specialized. I only sat as a teachers’s aide. Teachers are committed but not fully trained or supported and very stressed. How can they even teach struggling students to read?

Mindy
12/20/2011

The reality–what do you do with older kids are 2-4 years behind in their grade level? You see, most schools do very little unless a parent is an advocate. Most parents do not catch the reading deficit. While, I love to discuss better teacher training–a generations of struggling readers is still emerging. Their are ways to remediate doing the middle school years but scholl are not investing in such students. They are being dismissed as illiterate. But, sucessful stories are out there.