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Language Arts

Dyslexia Early Literacy

Seattle Public Schools Early Screening for Dyslexia

Seattle Public Schools (SPS) is developing systems and supports for a district-wide approach to serve students with reading difficulties, including dyslexia. As a result, SPS has been working collaboratively with internal work groups, committees, and community focus groups to ensure we effectively serve every student in need of additional supports to increase their foundational reading skills.

The Washington State Legislature is requiring that at the beginning of 2021-22 school year, multitiered systems of support (MTSS) is used to provide interventions to students in grades K-2 who display indications associated with dyslexia. Providing MTSS to support students that need additional foundational reading support is in compliance with WA State law, RCW 28A320.260. Each school year students will be screened using tools and resources that exemplify best practices, as described under RCW 28A.300.700.

The 65th WA State Legislature, 2018 Regular Session, adopted the definition of Dyslexia as:

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)

Dyslexia Resources

Please email with questions and inquiries.

Definition of dyslexia adopted by the 65th WA State Legislature, 2018 Regular Session  E2SSB 6162.pdf

Dyslexia Work Group and Educator Groups

Work Group

The internal work group in Seattle Public Schools was formed with members from the following departments:

  • Curriculum, Assessment, and Instruction
  • Early Learning
  • Special Education
  • English Learners

This work group convenes monthly to plan for the implementation of a dyslexia screener and multi-tiered systems of supports (MTSS) for SPS students identified by the screener, in grades K-2. Workgroup members meet with OSPI monthly to discuss WA State Legislature updates and receive guidance to ensure Seattle Public Schools is in alignment with state mandates.

Dyslexia Practitioner Group

Seattle Public Schools has formed a Dyslexia Practitioner Committee, which will meet monthly to review the work group’s process and provide feedback. The members of the Dyslexia Practitioner Committee are principals, educators, and reading interventionists.

Community Focus Groups

Seattle Public Schools is committed to fostering and maintaining partnerships with our families to serve our students. The Dyslexia Work Group will engage with various family focus groups to update the community on SPS?s progress on implementing the screener and allow space to hear the needs of our community.


Goals of the Dyslexia Work Group, Practitioner Committee, and Community Focus Groups :

Beginning in 2021-22 school year, SPS will use multitiered systems of support (MTSS) to provide supports to students in grades K-2 who display signs related to dyslexia, in compliance with WA State law, RCW 28A320.260.

Students will be assessed using tools and resources that ensure best practices, as described under RCW 28A.300.700.

The Practitioner Committee, Community Focus Groups, and Dyslexia Work Group will:

  • Make sure SPS is following guidance set forth by the WA State Legislature on the Early Screening of Dyslexia, E2SSB 6162.
  • Review OSPI-approved dyslexia screeners.
  • Recommend professional development training for educators and school staff to support students needing help with additional foundational skills.
  • Engage district staff, educators, principals, and community to ensure that the planning process includes input and feedback from the voices of our community, especially those furthest from educational justice.


Dyslexia Work Group 2020-21 Scheduled Meetings: The workgroup convenes every third Wednesday of each month.

Dyslexia Practitioner Committee 2020-21 Scheduled Meetings: Committee meets every two weeks.