Sen. Keith Wagoner, R-Sedro-Woolley, lauded work to improve early detection of dyslexia in Washington schools. Wagoner voted for Senate Bill 6162, which would define dyslexia as a learning disability, direct schools to screen every kindergarten student and second-grader beginning in the 2020-21 school year, and require that schools provide necessary interventions.
Wagoner was particularly supportive of the legislation due to a personal connection in district.
“I surprisingly had a neighbor come to Olympia to testify on this legislation in committee,” said Wagoner. “It was heart-wrenching to hear her personal story; even though I live right across the street, I was totally unaware of her struggle. Imagine a child, living with this often-invisible learning disability, thinking she just wasn’t smart. Consider how different a student’s life can be if we intervene early.”
The legislation would include parental notification provisions, and would allow flexibility of state funds to meet the screening requirements. The bill was approved unanimously and now goes to the House of Representatives for consideration.
“The House had a companion bill, but it did not make it through the process,” added Wagoner. “I’m hopeful they will take up this legislation and help these students reach their full potential. Education is supposed to be the great equalizer of our society and I will always support education measures that helps to keep that true.”