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Tests & Assessments
Assessing Reading Difficulties and Disabilities

Question 3.

Can you test a child for dyslexia?

Answer

Yes.

Dyslexia is a specific learning disability that affects language.

A child with dyslexia will have difficulty reading accurately and fluently.

Spelling will be poor. Most children with dyslexia have weaknesses in phonological processing. Many also have weaknesses in rapid naming.

Most standardized, norm-referenced tests that are used to test for learning disabilities are also used to evaluate children for dyslexia.

Is the school telling you something that just doesn't sound right? You need to educate yourself about dyslexia and how kids with dyslexia learn to read.

The word, dyslexia has always been recognized as a learning disability in federal law. See the definition of "specific learning disability" in the federal law and special education regulations.

But, the label is not important. It is essential that your child gets the proper instruction so he can learn to read.

Legal Resource

Wrightslaw: All About Tests and Assessments, 2nd Edition Chapter 6 - Reading Assessments

Wrightslaw: Special Education Law, 2nd Edition

IDEA

20 U.S.C.§ 1401(30)

20 U.S.C.§ 1414

20 U.S.C.§ 1414(b)(6)

Wrightslaw: Special Education Law, 2nd Edition, p. 55, footnote 47.

IDEA Regulations

34 C.F.R. §300.301

34 C.F.R. §300.307

34 C.F.R. §300.8(c)(10)

34 C.F.R. §300.309(a)(1)

Additional Resources

Research Based Reading Programs and Reading Assessments

Ask the Evaluator: Teacher Resources for Dyslexia Screening.

"Dyslexia is Not a Learning Disability. What?"

"When the School Says Dyslexia is Not a Learning Disability...."

When Evaluation Shows a Disability, School Says Child is "Lazy"

Guidance Publication on Educating Students with Dyslexia, Dyscalculia and Dysgraphia

Reading at Wrightslaw

International Dyslexia Association - Dyslexia Assessment

State Special Education Regulations and Guidelines. You will find your specific state regulations at your State Department of Education website. Use the Wrightslaw Yellow Pages for Kids with Disabilities to locate your state site.

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