Ongoing support for parents with dyslexic kids ramps up through October — National Dyslexia Awareness Month — and is backed by AB 1369, signed by Gov. Jerry Brown on October 8.
Cosponsored by Assemblymember Das Williams, the legislation will help public schools better identify and teach children with dyslexia, a learning disorder estimated to affect one in five K-12 students statewide.
Here in Santa Barbara, Cheri Rae — whose dyslexic son recently graduated from Santa Barbara High School with an academic scholarship to Whittier College — is heading up educational outreach offered twice daily, Monday through Friday, at Santa Barbara Unified School District’s Parent Resource Center, free of charge.
Also, on October 14, Rae will host a free screening of “Embracing Dyslexia,” a 50-minute documentary that explores the inheritable, language-processing disorder that impacts reading, writing, and spelling. A Q&A will follow. The event starts at 5:30 p.m. in the school district’s boardroom.
Late last month, Santa Barbara Unified’s board of education passed a resolution stating that “students with dyslexia, especially those who are not identified and are reading below grade level at the end of third grade, often experience difficulties with depression, anxiety, and poor self-image and rarely catch up to their peers and, as a result, underperform in school and are at a greater risk for dropping out. [However,] with proper identification, appropriate instruction, accommodation, access to assistive technologies, support from families, teachers and friends, individuals with dyslexia can excel in school and employment.”
On October 15, the public is invited to a first look at “Welcome to DyslexiaLand: Population 1 in 5,” a display of visual arts pieces featuring Albert Einstein, John Lennon, and Thomas Edison, among other inventive minds who were dyslexic. And on October 22, concerned parents will convene at 5 p.m. at the Central Library for Rae’s ongoing Dyslexia Dialogue. Anyone is welcome.
For more information contact Rae at TheDyslexiaProject@gmail.com.