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Laws and guidelines

Many states have enacted laws and guidelines spelling out how schools can help students with dyslexia.

Such laws vary by state.

According to understood.org, a website on learning and attention issues founded by 15 nonprofit organizations, they generally address issues such as:


Link to main story: How schools are disrupting dyslexia


  • The definition of dyslexia
  • Early screening and identification in K3
  • Procedures for screening and intervention
  • Professional development
  • Training in teacher preparation programs
  • Accommodations and support for students who are dyslexic or at risk; and
  • Funding, according to understood.org, a  website on learning and attention issues founded by 15 nonprofit organizations.

One of the earliest laws, adopted by Texas in 1985, required schools to screen and treat dyslexia. As a result of additional legislation passed over the years, Texas issued a 152-page dyslexia handbook in 2014, spelling out laws, procedures and research.

This year, the California State Department of Education issued the California Dyslexia Guidelines. The 118-page handbook, which is not binding, covers a wide range of topics, from neuroscience to effective instructional techniques.


Eleanor Chute is a freelance writer based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.