Opinion
Reading & Literacy Letter to the Editor

Dyslexia Group: Education Schools Must Boost Teaching of Reading

August 05, 2013 1 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

To the Editor:

In 2000, the bipartisan National Reading Panel issued recommendations on the skills children need to become successful readers. More than a decade later, a majority of teachers-in-training are still not receiving the knowledge they need to impart these skills.

A recent review of schools of education by the National Council on Teacher Quality, or NCTQ, shows that only 29 percent of the nearly 600 education schools reviewed adequately address the five reading component skills identified in the reading panel’s report (phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension) in their teacher-training curricula (“Disputed Review Finds Disparities in Teacher Prep,” July 10, 2013).

The NCTQ review set a low bar for schools of education.

The International Dyslexia Association, or IDA, believes that teachers require a greater depth of knowledge and practice to become skilled teachers of reading. In 2010, the IDA published comprehensive knowledge and practice standards, and last year recognized nine programs that are aligned with them.

While critics may be tempted to write the IDA standards off for their focus on the needs of struggling readers, these standards essentially codify the recommendations of the National Reading Panel, which concluded that all students benefit from science-based reading instruction. More importantly, all teachers require knowledge of science-based reading instruction and how to apply it to the range of learners in their classrooms.

Why have schools of education been slow to embrace the need for better-trained teachers in reading? A significant hurdle lies in the lack of faculty expertise in the area of reading science.

In recent years, a movement toward improved teacher training in reading has been building, and more than half the states have enacted or introduced literacy laws. These can only take us so far. The schools of education must step up their efforts.

Elisabeth Liptak

Director of Professional Development

International Dyslexia Association

Baltimore, Md.

Related Tags:

A version of this article appeared in the August 07, 2013 edition of Education Week as Dyslexia Group: Education Schools Must Boost Teaching of Reading

Events

This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Budget & Finance Webinar
Innovative Funding Models: A Deep Dive into Public-Private Partnerships
Discover how innovative funding models drive educational projects forward. Join us for insights into effective PPP implementation.
Content provided by Follett Learning
Budget & Finance Webinar Staffing Schools After ESSER: What School and District Leaders Need to Know
Join our newsroom for insights on investing in critical student support positions as pandemic funds expire.
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Student Achievement Webinar
How can districts build sustainable tutoring models before the money runs out?
District leaders, low on funds, must decide: broad support for all or deep interventions for few? Let's discuss maximizing tutoring resources.
Content provided by Varsity Tutors for Schools

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

Reading & Literacy Older Students Who Struggle to Read Hide in Plain Sight. What Teachers Can Do
Going back to basics may get to the root of the problem.
6 min read
Image of a seventh-grade student looking through books in her school library.
A seventh-grade student looks through books in her school library.
Photo by Allison Shelley for EDUimages
Reading & Literacy The Key Parts of a 'Science of Reading' Transformation, According to One State Chief
Under Carey Wright's leadership, Mississippi pulled off a reading "miracle." She has a similar transformation in mind for Maryland.
6 min read
Dr. Carey Wright, the interim state superintendent for Maryland, discusses improving literacy instruction and achievement with Stephen Sawchuk, an assistant managing editor for Education Week, during the 2024 Leadership Symposium in Arlington, Va. on Friday, May 3, 2024.
Carey Wright, the state superintendent for Maryland, discusses improving literacy instruction and achievement during Education Week's Leadership Symposium in Arlington, Va., on May 3, 2024.
Sam Mallon/Education Week
Reading & Literacy Teachers Are Still Teaching Older Students Basic Reading Skills, Survey Finds
Who across the K-12 spectrum engages frequently in activities that promote foundational reading skills? The answer may come as a surprise.
4 min read
Group of kids reading while sitting on the floor in the library
Zinkevych/iStock/Getty
Reading & Literacy Spotlight Spotlight on The Science of Reading in Practice
This Spotlight will help you analyze new curricula designed to build knowledge, review the benefits of reading aloud to students, and more.