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Welcome to the DISD Dyslexia Home Page.
Here you will find information on dyslexia and the instructional services we provide for dyslexia instruction.
Links for the Dyslexia Handbook in English and Spanish:
The updated Texas Dyslexia Handbook, linked below, is in effect as of February 10th, 2022.
New for 2023-24: Dickinson ISD is pleased to announce that we were awarded a Dyslexia Training Grant from TEA in the amount of $187,904! This grant will provide amazing professional development for our teachers.
For more information, contact Karen Hollen.
From the TEA Website: Please note: House Bill 3928 was passed by the 88th Texas Legislature (Regular Session) and impacts dyslexia evaluation, identification, and services. While the agency works to update the necessary materials, be aware that the law is effective immediately. The State Board of Education's proposed timeline for its required changes will be communicated as that timeline is determined and communicated to the agency. The agency has created a brief overview video of the bill.
In Dickinson, we are already prepared to meet the provisions within HB 3928. It has long been our practice to ensure someone with specific knowledge on dyslexia and related disorders is a member of the evaluation team and ARD committee when dyslexia is suspected / identified.
All of our dyslexia evaluations already meet the IDEA federal standards for learning disability determination within the full and individual evaluation (FIE). We have certified and trained staff on each campus to provide high quality dyslexia services.
Dyslexia is a specific learning disability that is neurobiological in origin. It is characterized by difficulties with accurate and/or fluent word recognition and by poor spelling and decoding abilities. These difficulties typically result from a deficit in the phonological component of language that is often unexpected in relation to other cognitive abilities and the provision of effective classroom instruction. Secondary consequences may include problems in reading comprehension and reduced reading experience that can impede growth of vocabulary and background knowledge (Adopted by the International Dyslexia Association Board of Directors, November 12, 2002).
If your child exhibits several of the characteristics listed in the Characteristics of Dyslexia tab, please complete
In Texas, we have a guiding document known as The Dyslexia Handbook. Additional information can be found at the TEA website.
In Dickinson ISD, we have used a single pathway for identification for dyslexia and dysgraphia for several years. All of our dyslexia and dysgraphia evaluations are conducted as an IDEA evaluation, meaning that we seek fully informed parental consent, which contains proper prior written notice and is accompanied by the notice of procedural safeguards for a Full Individual Initial Evaluation (FIIE) under the IDEA. For all initial evaluations, parents are also provided a copy of the Guide to ARD Process.
Interesting Facts about Dyslexia
Mild to Moderate Dyslexia
Types of Dyslexia
Good books for more information
Reading David: A Mother and Son’s Journey Through the Labyrinth of Dyslexia by Lissa Weinstein, PhD.
Overcoming Dyslexia: A New and Complete Science-Based Program for Reading Problems at Any Level by Sally Shaywits, M.D.
The Many Faces of Dyslexia by Margaret Byrd Rawson
Different Is Not Bad. Different Is the World by Sally L. Smith
The Worst Speller in Junior High by Caroline Janover
Josh: A Boy with Dyslexia by Caroline Janover
How Dyslexic Benny Became a Star: A story of Hope for Dyslexic Children and Their Parents by Joe Griffith
My Name is Brain/Brian by Jeanne Betancourt
What is Dyslexia
The Power of Dyslexia about Famous Dyslexics
Dyslexia for a Day - Reading
LEAs are required, per Texas Education Code (TEC), §38.003, to conduct universal dyslexia screening of students in kindergarten and first grade. Kindergarten students must be screened for dyslexia at the end of the school year, and first grade students must be screened no later than January 31st. The Dyslexia Handbook describes the screening criteria for this requirement. The updates to the Dyslexia Handbook include a reduction in the number of skills that must be included on the instrument used by LEAs to screen for dyslexia. The updated criteria for English and Spanish screening instruments are as follows:
Dickinson ISD uses the mCLASS Texas instrument, which is a TEA approved instrument.
The Dyslexia team provides
dyslexia therapy in accordance to The Dyslexia Handbook 2018 Update: Procedures
Concerning Dyslexia and Related Disorders, Texas Education Agency, Austin
Texas, November 2018. The team has reviewed the new 2021 updates and are prepared to implement instruction accordingly.
We believe All children deserve the opportunity to read and
write with success. Our mission is to uncover and illuminate the strengths of
students with dyslexia.
Karen Hollen, District Dyslexia Specialist has 25 plus years of experience including classroom teaching, reading intervention, instructional coaching and campus leadership. Karen received a Bachelors in Interdisciplinary Studies, a Master in Reading Education and post Masters certification in Leadership from the University of Houston-Clear Lake and she is currently enolled in an Educational Diagnostician certification program. She strongly believes that education needs to prepare students to lead a choice filled life that is not limited by weakness but defined by their strengths.
Dickinson Elementary & Middle School Campuses
Bay Colony Elementary
Calder Rd. Elementary
Hughes Rd. Elementary
K.E. Little Elementary
San Leon Elementary
Barber Middle School
Dunbar Middle School
Lobit Education Village
Melissa Matranga (Elementary)
Rose-Anne Thompson (Middle)
Jillian Anderson (Middle)
Dickinson Secondary School Campuses
McAdams Jr. High School
Kranz Jr. High School
Dickinson Jr. High School
Arthenia “Tilly” Bluit
Dickinson High School
Thomas "Matt" Wellman
The following are the primary reading/spelling characteristics of dyslexia:
It is important to note that individuals demonstrate differences in degree of impairment and may not
exhibit all the characteristics listed above.
The reading/spelling characteristics are most often associated with the following:
Consequences of dyslexia may include the following:
If your child is exhibiting the characteristics of dyslexia, then please click here to complete this form: Parent Dyslexia Referral Form
General Characteristics to watch for:
Kindergarten and First Grade
Second Grade and Third Grade
Fourth Grade through Sixth Grade
Middle School through High School
Dickinson ISD has invested significant resources of time, energy and money into bringing the best training to our Dyslexia Interventionists. We advocate following the Texas Dyslexia Handbook by providing the 8 critical evidence-based components and 6 methods of delivery of instruction (aka 8 X 6).
We advocate the use of the following methodologies:
- Neuhaus Education Center
- Reading by Design (ESC Region 4)
8 Critical, Evidence-Based Components
6 Methods of Delivery of Instruction
1. Phonological Awareness
(internal sound structure of words)
1. Simultaneous, Multisensory
(uses all pathways to the brain VAKT)
2. Sound-symbol Association
2. Systematic and Cumulative
(material follows the order of language)
(6 syllable types)
3. Explicit Instruction
(involves direct instruction that explicitly teaches each concept and leaves nothing to discovery)
(written spelling patterns and rules)
4. Diagnostic Teaching to Automaticity
(Using continual assessment to teach to mastery and automaticity)
(study of how morphemes are combined to form words
5. Synthetic Instruction
(how parts work to form whole)
(grammar, sentence variation, mechanics of language)
6. Analytic Instruction
(breaks whole into parts)
7. Reading Comprehension
(extracting and constructing meaning from text)
8. Reading Fluency
(ability to read with sufficient speed and accuracy to comprehend)
Important Texas Links:
Important National Links:
Learning Ally App (Parent Instructions)
Learning Disabilities Online
National Center for Learning Disabilities
Recordings for the Blind and Dyslexic (books on tape)
Ways to Help:
DISD Dyslexia Department
All children deserve the opportunity to read and write with success.
Our mission is to uncover and illuminate the strengths of students with dyslexia. Dyslexia Specialists will provide an Orton-Gillingham research-based approach to support academic growth in literacy.
Our Beliefs about:
Students... We believe that through the use of Orton Gillingham instruction, we provide multi-sensory instruction, intervention, support, and advocate on students’ behalf; therefore, providing the keys to unlock the potential of every student.
Parents...We believe in a support system for parents by providing quality training on characteristics of dyslexia, identification, effective teaching strategies, information on accommodations and modifications, and resources to facilitate their child’s academic growth.
Staff...We believe in educating teachers by disseminating information and offering practical advice on the characteristics of dyslexic students, identification of dyslexic students, effective, multisensory strategies for teaching students with dyslexia, and the accommodations needed for success in the classroom.
Dyslexia Specialists...We believe in fostering a sense of community among the department through ongoing communication and professional development.
Community...We believe that educating the citizens of Dickinson about dyslexia will promote an informed and supportive community.
Dickinson Independent School District
2218 FM 517 East | Dickinson, TX 77539
Inclusive of all, Dickinson ISD will cultivate excellence, producing confident, collaborative, goal-driven learners who become empowered citizens in a global society.
Dickinson ISD will equip and empower all learners with skills and experiences to achieve academic excellence and make meaningful contributions to our world.
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