Dyslexia in the Illinois State Education Code

It’s been a long road, but on January 13th the definition of dyslexia was officially put into the Illinois State Education Code.  We hope that this is the first step toward change for students with dyslexia in Illinois.  We need to continue to push our legislators for reading reform.  We will not stop until we make changes in our teacher prep programs, mandate early screening and evidence based intervention and get our kids access to the assistive technology they need to keep up with grade level content.  As parents of children with dyslexia, we need to tell our stories!!  By doing this, we not only give a voice to our child but to other children throughout the state.

Section 226.125 Specific Learning Disability: Dyslexia

a) For the purposes of this Section, dyslexia means 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. (Definition from the Board of Directors of the International Dyslexia Association.)

b) In accordance with 34 CFR 300.8(b)(10), dyslexia is one of a number of disorders included as a specific learning disability that may adversely affect the student’s educational performance and result in the child’s eligibility for special education and related services.

c) Each child suspected of having dyslexia or identified as dyslexic shall be referred for an evaluation in accordance with the requirements of 34 CFR 300.304 through 300.311 and Subpart B of this Part.

(Source: Added at 40 Ill. Reg. 2220, effective January 13, 2016)

We are beginning to plan to Spring Advocacy Day in Springfield.  Details will be coming soon and we would love for you to join us! Follow us on Facebook for updates.




    My son is in 5th grade and has an iep. He qualifies for special services. He had such a hard time with phonics, his school recommended the Wilson Method now my husband and I pay for a tutor at home. Is there anything I can do now to have school provide better services? Thank you

    • abaronello

      Hi Lisa, I’m sorry I didn’t get your message sooner. Is the school providing Wilson for your son as well?

  • Shelly Flachs

    Okay, now how do we get to schools to to provide services

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