Education Talk Radio host Larry Jacobs interviewed Sally Shaywitz, M.D., co-director of the Yale Center for Dyslexia & Creativity and author of Overcoming Dyslexia, about the importance of early identification and intervention for young people with dyslexia. It starts with screening children for dyslexia in schools in kindergarten and first grade. Shaywitz, along with Center Co-Director Bennett Shaywitz, M.D., developed a quick, evidence-based screening tool that identifies students who are at risk for dyslexia. The duo teamed up with Pearson to distribute Shaywitz DyslexiaScreen™ to educators.
“We have a reading crisis in this country,” says Dr. Shaywitz. “If you look at the data, as Dr. Bennett Shaywitz and I do, you see that for the poorest readers, it’s getting worse and all the evidence points to dyslexia as the explanation and potential solution. But the problem is that dyslexia is not being identified in schools. Dyslexia is incredibly common and affects boys and girls of all backgrounds and locations….In our 30-plus year Connecticut Longitudinal Study, we found that the gap between typical readers and dyslexic readers was already present in first grade and it didn’t go away. We have to identify children early.”