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My son has a great deal of difficulty reading, but the school claims he just needs to be taught better. We are getting him tutoring. I am getting him evaluated and I think he might have dyslexia. I was told that I had to prove he has dyslexia or some other processing disorder to get tutoring. But someone else said that you didn’t have to prove that there was a processing disorder with the new IDEA regulations. What are the facts?

There is much confusion about SLD under the new IDEA 2004 provisions and 2006 regulations. However, while the procedures for evaluating SLD have changed, including introducing the option of a research based regular education intervention (RTI), prior to formal evaluation of SLD, the SLD definition did not change and still requires the presence of a processing disorder The definition in the federal regulations specifically states: “Specific learning disability means a disorder in one or more of the basic psychological processes involved in understanding or in using language, spoken or written, that may manifest itself in the imperfect ability to listen, think, speak, read, write, spell or to do mathematical calculations, including conditions such as perceptual disabilities, brain injury, minimal brain dysfunction, dyslexia, and developmental aphasia.” (See 34 CFR 300.8 (c)(10).)

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