In the state of Texas, students who continue to struggle with reading, despite appropriate or intensified instruction, are provided organized systems of reading support. Some students struggle during early reading acquisition while others do not struggle until the later grades, even at the postsecondary level.  Here they face more complex language demands (e.g., reading textbooks, academic texts, and other print material). For many struggling readers, the difficulty may be due to dyslexia. Dyslexia is found in all student populations and languages. Some students with dyslexia may be English language learners (ELLs) who struggle with reading not only in English, but in their native language as well. In Texas, assessment for dyslexia is conducted from kindergarten through grade 12.


The purpose of The Dyslexia Handbook is to provide procedures for school districts, charter schools, campuses, teachers, students, and parents/guardians in early identification of, instruction for, and accommodations for students with dyslexia. This handbook will be used by districts and charter schools as they develop their written procedures regarding students with dyslexia. It will also serve as a resource for educator preparation programs and other entities seeking guidance in serving students with dyslexia.


Texas Education Code (TEC) §38.003 defines dyslexia and related disorders, mandates testing students for dyslexia and providing instruction for students with dyslexia, and gives the State Board of Education (SBOE)authority to adopt rules and standards for administering testing and instruction. TEC §7.028(b) relegates the responsibility for school compliance with the requirements for state educational programs to the local school board. Chapter 19 of the Texas Administrative Code (TAC) §74.28 outlines the responsibilities of districts and charter schools in the delivery of services to students with dyslexia. Finally, The Rehabilitation Act of 1973, §504, establishes assessment and evaluation standards and procedures for students (34 C.F.R. Part 104).


This handbook reflects current law as well as legislative action from the 82nd and 83rd sessions of the Texas Legislature and replaces all previous handbook editions. The new legislation includes the following:

  • TEC §21.044(c)(2) outlines the curriculum requirement for institutions of higher education for teacher preparation to include the characteristics of dyslexia, identification of dyslexia, and multisensory strategies for teaching students with dyslexia. 
  • TEC §21.054(b) and TAC §232.11 mandate continuing education requirements for educators who teach students with dyslexia.
  • TEC §28.021(b) establishes guidelines to districts based on best practices when considering factors for promotion and the student identified with dyslexia.
  • TEC §38.003(b-1) (specific to K–12) and TEC §51.9701 (specific to institutions of higher education) both mandate that a student determined to have dyslexia may not be retested for dyslexia for the purpose of reassessing that student’s need for accommodations until the district/institution of higher education reevaluates the information obtained from previous testing of the student.
  • TEC §38.0031 establishes the online technology tool for students identified with dyslexia.      
  • TEC §42.006(a-1) mandates the collection of data for students identified with dyslexia to be reported in the Public Education Information Management System (PEIMS).
  • TAC §230.23 requires TEA to provide accommodations for persons with dyslexia who take licensing examinations.


The following chapters are included in this handbook:

I. Definitions and Characteristics of Dyslexia

II. Procedures for the Assessment and Identification of Students with Dyslexia

III. Instruction for Students with Dyslexia


The Dyslexia Handbook has nine appendices:

A. Sources of Laws and Rules for Dyslexia Identification and Instruction

B. State Statutes Related to Dyslexia

C. Questions and Answers

D. Contacts for Further Information

E. Associated Terms

F. Bibliography

G. Students with Disabilities Preparing for Postsecondary Education: Know Your Rights and Responsibilities

H. Section 504 Code of Federal Regulations and Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act of 2008

I. History of Dyslexia Law



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