The Special Ed Advocate Newsletter
November 2, 2004

Issue -
ISSN: 1538-3202

In this Issue

1. Message from the Editor: Reading & Research

2. Double Dipping: Kids with Disabilities in Reading Programs

3. What Works in Teaching Kids to Read?

4. Teaching Adolescents to Read

5. Teaching "Late Bloomers"

6. Is Retention an Appropriate Intervention?

7. Wrightslaw Programs in VA & OK

8. Caselaw: Reading

9. Help in Yellow Pages for Kids

10. Subscription & Contact Info

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At Wrightslaw, our goals are to help you gain the information and skills you need navigate the amazing, confusing world of special education.

Highlights: Reading and research; double-dipping - kids with disabilities and Title I reading programs; effective methods to teach reading; teaching adolescents to read; teaching late bloomers; retention as an intervention; caselaw about reading; Wrightslaw programs in VA & OK; find help in the Yellow Pages for Kids.

Quote of the Week: "Difficulty in learning to read crushes the excitement and love for learning which most children have when they enter school." - G. Reid Lyon

Download this issue of The Special Ed Advocate.

Wrightslaw is ranked #1 in education law, special education law, and special education advocacy. (2004 Alexa rankings)

1. From the Editor: Reading & Research

Most children with disabilities have significant deficits in reading. These children need research-based instruction that targets their reading problems. But most children do not receive research-based reading instruction so they do not learn to read proficiently.

In this issue, we look at reading and research based instruction. Research psychologist Reid Lyon is Chief of the Child Development and Behavior Branch, National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, National Institutes of Health. Dr. Lyon answers questions about reading research, myths, late bloomers, teaching adolescents, and retention.

In last week's issue of The Special Ed Advocate, Sue Heath answered a parent's questions, offered strategies for getting help, and recommended a plan in Teaching a Child to Read: Special Ed or Reading First? Sue's answers led a speech therapist to ask about "double-dipping" . . .

2. Double-Dipping? Are Kids with Disabilities Barred from Title I Reading Programs?

"I work as a speech therapist for a public school system. We have been told that students may not have Title I reading resource and special ed goals in reading because this is "double-dipping" into federal monies. Is this true?"

What do you think? Are kids with disabilities barred from Title I Reading programs to prevent them from "double dipping?" In Double-Dipping: Are Kids with Disabilities Barred from Title I Programs, Pam Wright and Sue Heath answer these questions - and suggest strategies to get information from your school and school district.

Sue Heath writes Doing Your Homework, a column about creative advocacy strategies. Read more Doing Your Homework articles.

More advocacy strategies.

3. What Works in Teaching Children to Read?

"Whole language" is embraced by some, cursed by many. For whom is it appropriate and for whom is it inappropriate? (Is it possible to tell in advance for whom it will work or won't work?)

Dr. Lyon discusses instructional approaches, strategies & programs that are most beneficial for kids at different phases of reading development in What Works in Teaching Children to Read?

More about research based instruction.

4. Teaching Adolescents to Read & How to Teach Reading in Middle & High School

"What reading programs and/or strategies do you recommend for high school students who are reading at 3rd grade level?"

In Teaching Adolescents to Read, Dr. Lyon writes, "You asked a critical question that is on the minds of many teachers and parents. Learning to read at age 6 or age 16 requires that students master all fundamental building blocks vital to reading comprehension . . ." Read article.

Go to the Reading Library for reliable information about reading, reading disabilities, research-based reading programs, law and caselaw, certified language therapists, and more.

5. Late Bloomers: Are We Teaching Kids to Read Before They Are Ready?

"I am concerned about beginning reading instruction at earlier ages. What about the 'late bloomer' whose cognitive skills are set by nature and will NOT be rushed, who is ready to read in the last half of Grade 1 ... or not until Grade 2, or Grade 3? By that time, reading instruction may be two years' beyond these kids, and they are 'left behind.'"

Dr. Lyon respond to this teacher's concerns with research and facts about late bloomers and "developmental lags" in Late Bloomers: Are We Teaching Kids to Read Before They Are Ready?

Learn more: Reading at Wrightslaw

6. Is Retention an Appropriate Intervention?

"Retention is a commonly used reading intervention. Do you see retention as an appropriate intervention? Please explain the scientific evidence supporting retention as an intervention.

Is Retention an Appropriate Intervention? to find out why Dr. Lyon says "Retention is hard to study experimentally because this is not a condition you can do randomized trials with - NOR WOULD YOU WANT TO!!!"

Retention & Social Promotion has articles, resources, and flyers about retention and social promotion.

7. Coming Soon! Wrightslaw Programs in Virginia Beach & Oklahoma City

Wrightslaw Special Education Law and Advocacy Training Programs focus on four areas: special education laws, rights & responsibilities; how to use the bell curve to measure progress & regression; SMART IEPs; and tactics & strategies for effective advocacy.

Participants will receive two books, Wrightslaw: Special Education Law and Wrightslaw: From Emotions to Advocacy, with their registration (Value: $59.90).

Virginia Beach, VA (Mini-Boot Camp) - November 12-13, 2004

Edmond, OK - Advocacy Training - December 4, 2004 - FREE to Oklahoma Parents & Caregivers!

Wrightslaw programs are usually "sold out" so if you plan to attend, don't procrastinate - register today!

If you are interested in bringing a Wrightslaw program to your community, please read FAQs about Seminars. (We are now scheduling programs for 2006.)

8. Caselaw: Reading

Are you an advocate for children with learning disabilities or reading problems? Reading at Wrightslaw includes cases about dyslexia, reading, and tuition reimbursement.

Evans v. Rhinebeck Central School District, U. S. District Court, Southern District of New York. Excellent case about tuition reimbursement, procedural and substantive issues, FAPE, dyslexia, objective measurement of progress.

Carter v. Florence County School District IV. Tuition reimbursement case; focuses on an appropriate program and IEP for Shannon Carter, a child with dyslexia.

Carter v. Florence County, U. S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit "Least restrictive environment" or where child learns?

Florence County School District Four v. Shannon Carter, 510 U.S. 7, (1993).If the public school defaults and the child receives an appropriate education in the private placement, parents are entitled to reimbursement for the child's education. This ruling opened the door to children with autism who receive ABA / Lovaas therapy.  Links to all decisions, transcript of oral argument in Carter

Caselaw about Reading

More Caselaw

9. Need Help? Visit the Yellow Pages for Kids with Disabilities

If you are looking for help - or a helper - visit the Yellow Pages for Kids with Disabilities. Your state Yellow Pages has many resources - evaluators, therapists, tutors, special Ed schools, advocates, organizations, and support groups.

Strategies to Find a Support or Study Group

What to Expect from an Evaluation of Your Child

Working with Independent Evaluators and Educational Consultants

Questions for a Lay Advocate

Questions for an Attorney


Yellow Pages Flyers are great to distribute at conferences, seminars, training programs, and workshops. Forward flyers to friends and family members who live in other states. Access all state flyers.

10. Subscription & Contact Info

The Special Ed Advocate is a free online newsletter about special education legal and advocacy issues, cases, and tactics and strategies. Subscribers receive "alerts" about new cases, events, and special offers on Wrightslaw books.

Law Library Seminars & Training
Advocacy Yellow Pages for Kids
No Child Left Behind Free Newsletter
IDEA Reauthorization Newsletter Archives

Contact Info

Pete and Pam Wright
Wrightslaw & The Special Ed Advocate
P. O. Box 1008
Deltaville, VA 23043
Website: https://www.wrightslaw.com
Email: newsletter@wrightslaw.com