School to screen all students for dyslexia, offer support

May 12, 2022 Brooklyn Eagle Staff
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New York City Mayor Eric Adams and New York City Department of Education (DOE) Chancellor David C. Banks on Thursday, with the support of Brooklyn official, announced a new, comprehensive approach to supporting public school students with dyslexia in the United States.

For the first time, all New York City public school students will be assessed for being at risk of dyslexia, be supported in their neighborhood schools, and receive specialized instruction through the development of special programs and academies. The announcement was made on the occasion of Dyslexia Awareness Day.

“As a student, I struggled with identifying my dyslexia until long after leaving the public school system. Today, we are announcing the most comprehensive approach to supporting dyslexic students in New York City to prevent students from experiencing that disadvantage,” said Adams.

“Early screening ensures that every child who needs support will get the help and resources they need,” said Banks. “These screeners are emblematic of this administration’s commitment to uplifting all of our students and making sure they are well equipped to succeed.”

Beginning this fall, the DOE will pilot two first-of-their-kind programs within New York City public schools, where 80 elementary schools and 80 middle schools across the city will receive targeted support and training to screen and identify students at risk for dyslexia and provide targeted interventions.

All schools will be supported by Academic Intervention Support coordinators on how to adjust core instruction and provide intervention when screeners, and other evidence of student work, indicate that students are not making adequate progress.

For the first time, every child from every Zip code will have this important opportunity afforded to them, free of charge. And by April 2023, all teachers in kindergarten through 12th grade will participate in Made by Dyslexia’s two-hour introductory training.

“As someone who was lucky to have my own dyslexia identified in first grade and receive evidence-based literacy intervention, I know how important early identification and intervention are to making dyslexic students academically successful,” said Assemblymember Robert Carroll (Park Slope-Windsor Terrace-Kensington).

“Dyslexia is the most prevalent learning disability in children, and yet it is woefully misunderstood, unrecognized, and just plain ignored,” said Assemblymember Jo Anne Simon (D-Cobble Hill-Brooklyn Heights-DUMBO), who has represented dyslexic students for decades and who started Dyslexia Awareness Day. “The mayor and the chancellor’s historic initiative forges a new path of hope for young students — to be screened for dyslexia and get the support they need to read and to thrive as their full selves.”

“All students in New York and nationwide deserve the tools to succeed in the classroom,” said U.S. Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-Brooklyn-Manhattan). “These early screenings are a great step toward ensuring that each student is given adequate resources to achieve academic success.”

“Ensuring all New York City public school students will be screened for dyslexia is a game-changer — for our students, for their families, and for our city’s future,” said State Sen. Andrew Gounardes (D-Southern Brooklyn).”

“Early identification of dyslexia among New York City school students is essential,” said State Sen. Roxanne J. Persaud (D-Southeast Brooklyn). “The sooner that students have access to services and supports, the better they will thrive.”

“The mayor is absolutely correct in this approach,” said State Sen. Diane Savino (D-Staten Island-Southwest Brooklyn). “For too long, students who have gone undiagnosed suffer the consequences.”

“Universal dyslexia screenings will ensure our schools provide early interventions, specialized literacy instruction, and ultimately place all of your students on a path to success,” said Councilmember Lincoln Restler (Brooklyn Heights-DUMBO-Greenpoint).

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