Information Concerning Dyslexia

  • Indiana law IC 20-35.5, et seq., as created by SEA 217 (2018) in April 2018, states that Indiana school corporations and charter school’s reading plans must now include screening for dyslexia risk factors and indicators. If a student is determined to be at-risk for dyslexia, the school will administer an additional dyslexia screener, which will identify whether or not the student needs to be referred for further testing. It also requires schools to use specific response to intervention processes if screeners indicate certain characteristics of dyslexia are present.
  • Dyslexia as defined by IC 20-18-2-3.5 is a specific learning disability that:
    • is neurological in origin and characterized by:
      • difficulties with accurate or fluent word recognition; and
      • poor spelling and decoding abilities;
    • typically results 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;
    • may include problems in reading comprehension and reduced reading experience that can impede the growth of vocabulary and background knowledge; and
    • may require the provision of special education services after an eligibility determination is made in accordance with 511 IAC 7-40.


  • In accordance with IC-20-35.5-6-2, Elkhart Community Schools is identifying an authorized reading specialist trained in dyslexia.
  • In accordance with this new law, each school corporation and charter school shall report on the school corporation or charter school’s website the following information: 
    • What intervention programs are used to assist students with characteristics of dyslexia? Dyslexia intervention programs must have explicit direction and instruction that is systematic, sequential, and cumulative. Instruction that follows a logical plan of presenting the alphabetic principle that targets the specific needs of the student without presuming prior skills or knowledge of the student. It must use meaning based instruction that is directed at purposeful reading and writing. Instruction that incorporates the simultaneous use of two (2) or more sensory pathways during the presentation of instruction and student practice. It is also important to keep in mind that the dyslexia program should be research based and be offered in a setting that also teaches the five (5) components of literacy.Elkhart Community Schools employs a variety of dyslexia intervention programs to meet the diverse needs of our learners, including The Reading Well, Wilson Foundations, and Read Naturally.  These methods and strategies are employed with students during Tier 1 interventions, as well as in small group instruction in Tiers 2 & 3. ECS also incorporates the use of web-based interventions through the use of Mindplay Virtual Reading Coach and the blended models of Systems 44 and Read 180 to provide multiple tiers of support to help all students achieve their learning targets. 
    • How many students received dyslexia interventions during the 2018-2019 school year? In the 2018-2019 school year, Reading Specialists provided Tier I instructional support and individual and small group interventions in the components of literacy.  A variety of interventions were used to help support students in the components of literacy.
    • How many students were identified with dyslexia during the 2018-2019 school year? Implementation of the new dyslexia law begins at the beginning of the 2019-2020 school year. School systems will not be diagnosing dyslexia, but will focus on finding and supporting students with characteristics of dyslexia. Required screeners, professional development, and interventions will continue to maximize learning in Elkhart Community Schools.


Please contact Rickie Meyers, Dyslexia Coordinator at (574) 262-5921 or with any questions you may have.


Click here to visit the ​IDOE website for more information on the new Indiana dyslexia law.