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Abstract

The current wave of dyslexia legislation backed by the science of reading is the latest literacy policy added to a decades-long list. Teachers, whose voices were largely excluded, are key stakeholders in any literacy policy initiative and are well-suited to inform policymakers about the complexities of teaching readers who struggle, including those diagnosed with dyslexia. This article previews the implications of legislation that narrowly focuses on “science” and disregards unique individual reader profiles. This article encourages teachers to get involved with policy that impacts their practices and provides suggestions to ensure their voices are included in this and future initiatives.

Author Bio

Dr. Kathleen S. Howe is an Assistant Professor of Literacy Education at Park University in Parkville, Missouri where she teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in the School of Education. She is the program coordinator for a Master’s in Language and Literacy that has pathways leading to certification in special reading and ELL. She worked in K-12 public education for over 25 years as a reading specialist, literacy coach, and most recently as deputy superintendent in a large, diverse district in the Atlanta Metro. Her research interests include literacy coaching, adolescent literacy, and education policy issues. She can be reached at kathleen.howe@park.edu.

Dr. Teddy D. Roop is an Assistant Professor at Emporia State University in Emporia, Kansas teaching reading undergraduate and graduate courses in the department of Elementary Education/Early Childhood Education/Special Education. She is a former elementary school teacher and a student-teacher mentor. Her research interests include assessments and interventions for struggling readers, MTSS tiered instruction, and the impact of policy on education. She can be reached at troop@emporia.edu.

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