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New Dyslexia Guide Will Help Educators and Students Improve Literacy Skills

LANSING – A new resource guide will help Michigan educators improve the literacy skills of children and build more successful learners, the Michigan Department of Education (MDE) said today.

The Michigan Dyslexia Handbook: A Guide to Accelerating Learner Outcomes in Literacy is designed to help educators develop a shared understanding of best practices to prevent reading difficulties associated with the primary consequences of dyslexia—a word-level reading disability. The handbook also provides assessment practices needed to inform instruction and intervention methods for learners with dyslexia characteristics.

“All children are entitled to educational experiences that prepare them for lifelong learning, success in the workforce, active citizenship, and the pursuit of their dreams,” said State Superintendent Dr. Michael Rice. “This is an important step to help all Michigan children learn to read well and, by extension, use their education as a foundation in their lives.”

The Michigan Dyslexia Handbook was developed by MDE with contributions and review by dyslexia and literacy experts from Michigan and across the nation. MDE is committed to working collaboratively with all stakeholders to improve literacy outcomes for all learners, including those exhibiting characteristics of dyslexia and identified with word-learning disability, who are the focus of this handbook. The Michigan Dyslexia Handbook provides related knowledge directly to Michigan educators.

“The handbook begins to bring together state literacy efforts that support educators’ use of practices aligned with reading science, or based on scientifically informed theories, to accelerate reading outcomes for all learners,” Dr. Rice said.

The handbook aligns with Michigan’s Top 10 Strategic Education Plan, Goal 2: Improve early literacy achievement, and Goal 5: Increase the percentage of all students who graduate from high school. Michigan’s Top 10 Strategic Education Plan was approved by the State Board of Education in August 2020 to provide focused direction to Michigan's education community in support of all learners.

Dyslexia is a reading disorder primarily characterized by word-level reading difficulties originating from phonological processing weaknesses.