On August 7th and 8th, Governor Chris Christie signs dyslexia bill into law; other bill pending.
PL 2013 Chapter 131
This bill directs the State Board of Education to promulgate regulations that incorporate the International Dyslexia Association’s (IDA) definition of dyslexia into chapter 14 of Title 6A of the New Jersey Administrative Code, which outlines the requirements for the provision of special education programs and services.
Currently, state board regulations at N.J.A.C.6A:14-3.5c-12 list dyslexia as one of the specific learning disabilities that may impair a person’s ability to understand or use language, or perform mathematical calculations. However, the regulations do not specifically define dyslexia.
Under the bill, signed by the Governor in August, the State Board of Education would incorporate the IDA definition which reads as follows:
“Dyslexia is a specific learning disability that is neurological 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.”
P.L. 2013 Chapter 105
A3606/3607 Acs (ACS)
This bill requires the DOE to provide professional development opportunities related to reading disabilities. It also mandates that certain school district personnel annually compete two hours of professional development related to reading disabilities. These Bills and Joint Resolutions were signed by the Governor.
This bill would requires all public school students to be screened for dyslexia and other reading disabilities by completion of first grade. Status is pending in the Assembly Appropriations Committee