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What is Dyslexia?

Dyslexia means a disorder of constitutional origin manifested by a difficulty in learning to read, write, or spell, despite conventional instruction, adequate intelligence, and sociocultural opportunity.  [TEC §38.003]


For questions or concerns regarding dyslexia in Arlington ISD, please contact:


Amy Cunningham

Arlington Dyslexia Identification Process


  • When a student enrolled in AISD has reading difficulties, all effort should be made to provide appropriate assessment and intervention. Campus personnel should employ best practices in assisting students, using strategies designed to address individual needs.
  • After various intervention strategies have been implemented, if the student continues to struggle in reading and displays characteristics of dyslexia, campus personnel or the student’s parent may request dyslexia screening.  All requests must be considered by the RTI Team before evaluation may occur.  

Formal Assessment

  • Parents must be notified and permission to test must be obtained, including notification of rights under §504 or IDEA.
  • The following domains must be assessed:  Reading real and nonsense words in isolation (decoding);  phonological/phonemic awareness; letter knowledge (name and associated sound);  rapid naming; reading fluency (rate and accuracy);  reading comprehension; written spelling (page 21 of the Dyslexia Handbook, 2014).
  • The campus dyslexia designee, usually the Assistant Principal, is responsible for facilitating the referral for dyslexia testing.   Additional data are to be compiled by the designee and submitted to the Dyslexia Department.  Upon review of student data, additional assessments will be administered by the Dyslexia Department.


  • With the assistance of District dyslexia personnel (Educational Support Services staff), completed student data shall be evaluated by the campus 504 or ARD committee to determine the educational identification of dyslexia. 
  • The student’s difficulties in the area of reading will reflect one or more of the primary characteristics of dyslexia with unexpectedly low performance for the student’s age and educational level in the following areas:
    • Reading real words in isolation
    • Decoding nonsense words
    • Reading fluency (both rate and accuracy)
    • Written spelling (an isolated difficulty in spelling would not be sufficient to identify dyslexia)
  • This low reading performance will be the result of a deficit in phonological processing, including the following:
    • Phonological awareness
    • Rapid naming
    • Phonological memory (an isolated difficulty in phonological memory would not be sufficient to identify dyslexia)
  • If the student has characteristics of dyslexia and difficulty in phonological processing, the committee considers if the difficulties are unexpected for cognitive abilities and for provisions of effective classroom instruction.

Services for Identified Students

Student Services

  • Students identified as dyslexic by the campus 504 or ARD committee shall be served on the home campus, following the 504/ARD committee accommodation plan or IEP. Recommendations from the dyslexia department personnel shall be considered as the accommodation plan is developed.
  • Students shall receive targeted instruction which include the following components: phonemic awareness, sound-symbol association, syllabication, orthography, morphology, syntax, reading comprehension, and reading fluency. Intervention components available on the student's home campus align with the description in The Dyslexia Handbook, TEA, 2014.
  • Instructional approaches include explicit,direct instruction that is systematic, sequential, cumulative, and multisensory. Instruction should also meet the needs of individual students in a small group setting with a curriculum that matches each student’s individual ability level.
  • All identified students will be served on their home campus, using the District-recommended instructional program that meets the requirements of TEA's Dyslexia Handbook, 2014.
  • Monitoring of students' progress shall occur on a regular basis, and parents shall be notified of that progress.

Child Find

§504 Child Find Notice

Pursuant to Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the District has a duty to identify, refer, evaluate and if eligible, provide a free, appropriate public education to disabled students.  For additional information about the rights of parents of eligible children, or for answers to any questions you might have about identification, evaluation and placement into Section 504 programs, please contact the District’s Section 504 Coordinator Amy Cunningham at 682-867-7465 or by mail at 690 E. Lamar Blvd, Arlington, TX 76011.

Aviso Sobre La Identificación de Estudiantes Incapacitados - bajo la Seccion 504

Bajo la Seccion 504 del Decreto de Rehabilitación de 1973, el Distrito Escolar esta obligado a identificar, referir, evaluar, y proporcionar servicios educativos apropriados y gratuitos a estudiantes incapacitados que califican para recibir servicios bajo esta ley. Si usted desea mas información sobre los derechos de padres de niños incapacitados, o si tiene preguntas sobre la identificación, evaluación, y colocación de niños en el programa de Seccion 504, favor de ponerse in contacto con el Coordinador de 504 del Distrito al numero 682-867-7465 o por correo a la siguiente dirección: 690E. Lamar Blvd, Arlington, TX 76011.

©1999-2014 Richards Lindsay & Martín, L.L.P.
CESD §504 Compliance System, November 20, 2014

Schools are required to locate, identify and evaluate all children with disabilities from birth through age 21. The Child Find mandate applies to all children who reside within a State, including children who attend private schools and public schools, highly mobile children, migrant children, homeless children, and children who are wards of the state. (20 U.S.C. 1412(a)(3))

This includes all children who are suspected of having a disability, including children who receive passing grades and are "advancing from grade to grade." (34 CFR 300.111(c)) The law does not require children to be "labeled" or classified by their disability. (20 U.S.C. 1412(a)(3)(B); 34 CFR 300.111(d)).


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