Dyslexia Information

 Dyslexia is a specific learning disorder that is neurological in origin and that is characterized by unexpected difficulties with accurate or fluent word recognition and by poor spelling and decoding abilities that are not consistent with the person's intelligence, motivation, and sensory capabilities. These difficulties typically result from a deficit in the phonological components of language that is often unexpected in relation to other cognitive abilities. Secondary consequences may include problems in reading comprehension and reduced reading experience that can impede growth of vocabulary and background knowledge. (E2SSB 6162)

This definition of dyslexia is adopted by the 65th WA State Legislature, 2018 Regular Session.

Dyslexia is: (from the OSPI Implementation Guide: Early Screening of Dyslexia)

  • A difference that makes processing speech sounds difficult, specifically the ability to hear, substitute, and change individual sounds in words.
  • Characterized by challenges with reading and spelling, particularly with the connections between letters and sounds.
  • Likely to lead to problems learning and remembering vocabulary, understanding what is read, getting thoughts on paper.
  • Not related to overall intelligence.
  • Not a visual problem or caused by a lack of motivation, interest, or exposure to rich literature, or ineffective classroom instruction

In 2018 the Washington State Legislature passed E2SSB 6162 establishing a state definition of dyslexia and directing schools to develop and implement a plan for addressing the needs of students with dyslexia or reading challenges consistent with dyslexia.

Parallel to the legislative work Rochester  School District  has been engaged in related  work:

  1. Skill-based literacy interventions on foundational skills of phonological awareness and phonics
  2. The development of a plan for implementing Multi-Tiered Systems of Support (MTSS).

This page provides a reference, and resources for teachers and families regarding the alignment of ongoing work to meet the needs of students with dyslexia or reading difficulties consistent with dyslexia.




For early identification of learning difficulties associated with dyslexia, RSD will use screening assessments and academic diagnostic/placement assessments three times per year for all K-2 students.

Screening Assessments (Screeners)
Purpose: to quickly identify students that MAY have significant difficulty in the area being assessed.

  • i-Ready Phonological Awareness subtest
  • i-Ready Phonics subtest
  • i-Ready Rapid Automatized Naming Assessment 


i-Ready is a state-approved assessment in compliance with E2SSB 6162.

Academic Diagnostics / Placement Assessments
Purpose: to determine the specific skills in which a student needs more instruction or intervention.  An academic diagnostic does not diagnose or determine if a student has a disability.

  • Phonological Awareness Skills Inventory
  • Phonics Skills Assessment



What if my student’s screening results show possible indicators of dyslexia?

If a student’s scores show warning indicators, the classroom teacher will collaborate with the school support team, PLC and interventionist to determine the next steps for instruction. This may include:

  • interventions with iReady, Heggerty, 95% Group literacy interventions, Sonday System, and additional multi-sensory interventions and strategies.
  • progress monitoring with iReady for specific literacy skill(s)
  • plan for ongoing parent/guardian communication and further partnership



  • Understanding the needs and research based practices associated with Dyslexia

    RCW 28A.320.260 Dyslexia interventions

    (1) Beginning in the 2021-22 school year, and as provided in this section, each school district must use multitiered systems of support to provide interventions to students in kindergarten through second grade who display indications of, or areas of weakness associated with, dyslexia. In order to provide school districts with the opportunity to intervene before a student’s performance falls significantly below grade level, school districts must screen students in kindergarten through second grade for indications of, or areas associated with, dyslexia as provided in this section.

    (2)(a) School districts must use screening tools and resources that exemplify best practices, as described under RCW 28A.300.700.

    (b) School districts may use the screening tools and resources identified by the superintendent of public instruction in accordance with RCW 28A.300.700.

    (3)(a) If a student shows indications of below grade level literacy development or indications of, or areas of weakness associated with, dyslexia, the school district must provide interventions using evidence-based multitiered systems of support, consistent with the recommendations of the dyslexia advisory council under RCW 28A.300.710 and as required under this subsection (3).

    (b) The interventions must be evidence-based multisensory structured literacy interventions and must be provided by an educator trained in instructional methods specifically targeting students’ areas of weakness.

    (c) Whenever possible, a school district must begin by providing student supports in the general education classroom. If screening tools and resources indicate that, after receiving the initial tier of student support, a student requires interventions, the school district may provide the interventions in either the general education classroom or a learning assistance program setting. If after receiving interventions, further screening tools and resources indicate that a student continues to have indications of, or areas of weakness associated with, dyslexia, the school district must recommend to the student’s parents and family that the student be evaluated for dyslexia or a specific learning disability.

    (4) For a student who shows indications of, or areas of weakness associated with, dyslexia, each school district must notify the student’s parents and family of the identified indicators and areas of weakness, as well as the plan for using multitiered systems of support to provide supports and interventions. The initial notice must also include information relating to dyslexia and resources for parental support developed by the superintendent of public instruction. The school district must regularly update the student’s parents and family of the student’s progress.

    (5) School districts may use state funds provided under chapter 28A.165 RCW to meet the requirements of this section.