The data shows that nearly one in five students are dyslexic or have a visual processing disorder, making learning the basics of reading, writing, and math much more challenging; traditional teaching methods simply don’t work for these children. Despite the staggering number of people affected, our system of education makes no accommodations to help these students succeed. For the students who are fortunate enough to be diagnosed, many parents will spend thousands of dollars to get their children the help they need. Students who aren’t diagnosed and who don’t have access to treatment or tutoring are significantly more likely to struggle academically and are less likely to graduate. Furthermore, national and state studies have shown that a statistically high percentage of the prison population has some type of learning disability.
Working with the Oregon chapter of Decoding Dyslexia, Representative Val Hoyle helped pass legislation to create a comprehensive statewide system for training teachers to recognize and educate students with dyslexia to improve grade-level reading and math performance and maximize the academic and professional potential of all children.