The Dyslexia Diagnosis


Navigating the world of information on dyslexia can be overwhelming.


You’ve just received the news from the educational psychologist that your child has dyslexia. Is your head spinning? Are you wondering where to start, and how to help your poor struggling child? This child who feels dumb or calls themselves stupid. This child who can’t spell their way out of a paper bag. You wonder how they are ever going to make it in a world that relies so much on the printed word.


Your wonderful educational psychologist explains to you that your child should begin tutoring right away with an Orton-Gillingham based reading program. Ok, great! You have a direction to go in.


But wait? How do I find someone to teach my child? Can’t the school do that? After all, I pay taxes! They should be able to give my child what they need to be successful! Unfortunately, they can’t. I’ll share more about that later.


The educational psychologists recommends that you call an Orton-Gillingham certified tutor in your area. Not fully understanding why the school can’t meet your child’s needs you resolve to get your child help no matter what it takes out of your pocket. The list of tutors is VERY short. You start calling around.


The first thing on your mind is, and let’s be honest here, how much is this going to cost? You live pay check to pay check as it is. But you want to do what is best for your child. And secretly, you wonder if this is really going to work anyway.


Does Your Child Have Auditory Issues?


There are two types of students we see at WNY Dyslexia Specialists, LLC. The first is the dyslexic child with no auditory issues. They can easily distinguish between sounds and hang on to those sounds in their auditory memory. They are ready to begin an Orton-Gillingham reading intervention.


But what if your child has been diagnosed with central auditory processing disorder, or they struggle to distinguish between sounds? Can they start in an Orton-Gillingham based program? From my experience, no, they cannot. If they try, they will likely make extremely slow progress or no progress at all.


We chose to use the Barton Reading & Spelling System which is the only Orton-Gillingham based system that requires students pass a student screening to begin the program.


Orton-Gillingham Won’t Work for A Child With CAPD


This is important! Why is it important? It’s important because starting an Orton-Gillingham based program with auditory memory or discrimination issues will be a very large waste of your time and you hard-earned money.The auditory issues MUST be corrected first. 


If you chose to begin in an Orton system for a child with uncorrected auditory issues, your child will not be able to read and spell by sounding out. They might be able to make some progress without glaring issues, but it will become overwhelming and confusing very quickly.


Make sure your child is receiving the right tutoring. Be sure that they do not have any auditory discrimination or memory issues before they begin an Orton-Gillingham program.


If your child had early intervention for speech or an IEP for speech language, it is highly likely that they need a phoneme sequencing program before they begin Orton-Gillingham. The auditory discrimination and memory issues must be corrected first. Our student screening process can tell you where your child needs to start.


At WNY Dyslexia Specialists, we offer both the Lindapmood-Bell LiPS program and the new Foundation in Sounds program. We are already seeing success with the Foundation in Sounds program with many of our students.


Make sure your tutor can tell you if your child is ready to begin an Orton-Gillingham based program or not. If your child has been in an Orton-Gillingham based program and isn’t making progress, it could be due to CAPD or another speech language issue. Find a tutor who understands this!


Do you need help figuring out where to start? Let us know in the comments below!

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