Dyslexia

“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

Dyslexia Screening

Students are screened at various grade levels per Texas Education Code 38.003 and 28.006. Dyslexia screening takes place in January for first grade students and beginning in April for kindergarten students. Students who did not meet standard on the sixth grade Reading STAAR assessment, and are not already identified as a student with a reading difficulty, are administered a literacy screener at the beginning of the seventh grade year. Additionally, the law requires that all students beyond first grade be screened or tested as appropriate.

Dyslexia Assessment

If a parent/guardian, teacher, or other person with knowledge of the child suspects a student has a disability, such as dyslexia, a referral for an evaluation is completed. Should an evaluation be warranted, it will be administered through Special Education. For more information about this process, please refer to the Comal ISD Special Education website.

Dyslexia Instruction

Comal ISD has adopted the Multisensory Teaching Approach (MTA) as the evidenced-based instructional program for all students who access direct dyslexia instruction. With MTA, identified students will receive direct dyslexia instruction for 45 minutes, 4 days a week.

The MTA curriculum is an Orton-Gillingham based approach to teaching reading which combines visual, auditory, tactile, and kinesthetic instruction. MTA continues to address all components of appropriate dyslexia instruction in accordance with 19 TAC §74.28(e) and per the 2021 updated The Dyslexia Handbook, Texas Education Agency.

Although Texas does not have a certification requirement specific to teachers providing intervention to students with dyslexia, teachers in Comal ISD who provide dyslexia instruction are effectively trained in the adopted curriculum. This includes training in the critical, evidence-based components of dyslexia instruction as outlined in The Dyslexia Handbook (2021). Additionally, teachers are highly encouraged to seek professional certification and/or licensure. 

Mandi Chapman
Director of MTSS/504/Dyslexia
(830) 221-2016
 
Jennifer Luftop, LDT, CALT
MTSS Dyslexia Coordinator
(830) 221-2179
 
Niki Kotrola
MTSS Dyslexia Specialist
(830) 221-2627