Thank you to the families, teachers and related professionals who joined Decoding Dyslexia Maryland in Annapolis on March 1 to raise dyslexia awareness and to advocate for interventions and supports for students with dyslexia in Maryland. Maryland families, students and teachers visited their legislators and asked for specific changes to Maryland education.
The program guide below will be updated with links to the presentation slides and video footage of the presentations.
What You Need to Know for Dyslexia Advocacy Day, 2016
Make appointments with your legislators in advance
Parking: Gott’s Garage, 2 blocks away
All Parking Garages
Navy-Marine Corps Stadium parking and shuttle (parking $5 a day, shuttle $4 round trip, cash only)
Dyslexia Advocacy Day, Community Partner Sponsors
Town Hall Panel Discussion on Reading & Dyslexia: Saturday, October 10, 2015
Why Aren't All Maryland Students Learning to Read? How to Close the Reading Gap
More than 200 parents, teachers and students joined Decoding Dyslexia Maryland for a critical panel discussion on literacy practices and solutions in Maryland public schools.
The quality of teacher instruction on literacy provided by Maryland institutions of higher education is one factor that seriously impacts student literacy achievement. As the demands of society change, proficient literacy levels are required to enable students to participate fully in the workforce and in their community. Standards and certification in reading and literacy are needed to ensure literacy for all students.
Literacy by the Numbers in Maryland:
Panelists & Keynote Biographies
Town Hall Program & Partners
Keynote: News Anchor Deborah Weiner, WBAL11 Baltimore
Panelists & Schedule
2:45-3:30 Information Tables // Refreshments
3:30-3:40 Welcome: Lisa Blottenberger: Decoding Dyslexia Maryland
3:40-3:45 Keynote Introduction: Dr. Fran Levin Bowman: Educational Specialist, bowman educational services, inc.
3:45-4:00 Keynote Speaker: Deborah Weiner: News Anchor, WBAL 11, Baltimore
4:00-4:10 Moderator: Katharina Boser: Ph.D., Glen Elg School: Panelist Introductions
4:10-5:30 Panelist Questions
5:30-5:45 Audience Questions & Answers
5:45-6:00 Closing Remarks: DD-MD Call to Action
How to Close the Reading Gap:
Student with dyslexia: Paul Nebel, St. Mary's County Public Schools
Parent of Student with dyslexia: Christine Bellotti, Montgomery County
Teacher of students with reading struggles & dyslexia: Lavaunda Roundtree, Special Educator, Anne Arundel County Public Schools
How to Close the Reading Gap:
The Neurological Underpinnings of Reading: Dr. Donald Bolger, Associate Professor in the Department of Human Development and Quantitative Methodology at the University of Maryland.
What Teachers Need to Know to Teach Reading to all Students: Mary Stowe, Reading, Inclusion Specialist, William & Mary School of Education, Training and Technical Assistance Center
How to Identify and Provide Effective Instruction to Struggling Readers: Marilyn Zecher, Certified Academic Language Therapist and President of the DC-Capital Area Branch of the International Dyslexia Association. Amy Siracusano, Teacher/Vice Principal/Teacher Trainer, Calvert County Public Schools
For More Information:
Dyslexia Talking Points
Legislative Goals, DD-MD
Dyslexia Stories to Share
WHO IS MY LEGISLATOR? -- Click box in upper right-hand corner after clicking this link!
Students who struggle to read, write and spell in public schools spoke with their legislators to explain what would help them do better in school and how to get those results. Families, teachers and dyslexia specialists and educators from across Maryland provided information to legislators about dyslexia and the educational, social and economic impacts of not learning to read in public school.
Research and evidence provide best practices to teach students with dyslexia and other language learning differences how to read, write and spell. There are more than 15 private schools in Maryland who offer a solution. Maryland public schools must identify struggling readers and those with risk factors for dyslexia in K-1 and provide evidence-based structured literacy interventions. HB 278 and SB 15 will take Maryland closer to that goal.
We must ensure that Maryland teachers have the tools and training that they requested in 1999 (Reading is Rocket Science, American Federation of Teachers: What Expert Teachers of Reading Should Know and Be Able to Do, June 1999). Teachers cannot teach the foundations of language and, screen for reading struggles and/or provide whole class interventions without teacher prep programs in Maryland colleges and without professional development.
Maryland teachers want all kids to learn to read, but they need the tools to make this happen. Appendix A of the Common Core State Standards provides a compendium of the foundational knowledge needed to teach reading -- very few teacher prep programs provide teachers with this knowledge or practice. How can we hold teachers accountable for their students' reading scores if they are not given the tools to teach reading to all students? The PARCC tests will show the number of kids who cannot read and it will be a surprisingly high number to many.
Decoding Dyslexia Maryland will continue to work to close the action GAP and bring parents, students, teachers and related professionals together to advocate for educational change. The Time is NOW.