Georgia Senate unanimously passes Dyslexia legislation

Georgia Senate. (Source: WALB)
Georgia Senate. (Source: WALB)
Updated: Feb. 25, 2019 at 6:11 PM EST
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(WTVM) - On Wednesday, the Georgia Senate passed Senate Bill 48 which requires the State Board of Education to develop policies for identifying dyslexia in Georgia’s students.

Dyslexia is a learning disorder that involves difficulty in learning to read or interpret words, letters, and other symbols, but that do not affect general intelligence. It can make traditional learning very difficult for undiagnosed children.

The legislation specifically calls for the preparation of a statewide screening program for all Kindergarten students and an additional referral system targeting students in grades one through three.

Officials say Dyslexia impacts up to 20% of our population yet tends to be overlooked as a serious issue facing Georgia students. They also say the new bill would help to detect dyslexia earlier – and at higher rates – which would lead to quicker remediation and greater success in the classroom.

“Georgia’s students deserve every opportunity to succeed when they are in our classrooms,” said Education Chairman P.K. Martin. “Right now, we’re not doing enough to address the challenges that dyslexia presents to nearly one out of every five students. By advancing a screening and referral system, creating a pilot program around early reading assistance programs, and increasing teacher preparedness, we’re taking important steps to help Georgia’s dyslexic students attain lasting success.”

Senate Bill 48 will now head to the Georgia House of Representatives for consideration.

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