MN 2018 Legislative Session

Mandatory Screening, Educator Professional Development, and clarification on the MDE Dyslexia Specialist role made it through various hurdles this session and were included in the final 1,000 page omnibus bill.  Per Governor Dayton's request, the dyslexia screening provision was removed during negotiations due to lack of funding.  After that, our governor vetoed the entire bill. 

While we walk away from session without the legislative wins desired to improve educational outcomes for students with dyslexia, my heart aches for children who will struggle unnecessarily without the public resources they have a right to.  Yet, I  will not look at the situation as a “win or lose” equation.   Rather, I will frame my thoughts in the manner of “win or learn.”  We learned incredibly this session and those learnings bring many gains! 

  • Relationships, inroads, and understanding of our goals were built with policymakers and organizations.
  • We have raised dyslexia awareness at the Capitol and have gathered tremendous bipartisan support for students who struggle. 
  • The word, dyslexia was mentioned in many committee meetings this session and is on the minds of our legislators.
  • Decoding Dyslexia Minnesota was invited to be part of and share our perspective on the Special Education task committee.
  • The teacher’s union, Education Minnesota, is planning educator professional development modules on dyslexia for both summer seminar and MEA!
  • Schools for Equity in Education (SEE) invited us to present and discuss dyslexia, our mission and policy to their members from across the state last week.

While disappointed in the current legislative status, and the inability to prioritize the education of all children above politics, I am confident in the direction we are moving.  DDMN remains steadfast in our mission to provide resource and support for children and their educators. We will continue working toward our policy goals.

We ask that you remain by our side as we continue the journey to ensure that educational needs of MN students with dyslexia are met!   The momentum we have would not be possible without the vocal parents and educators in our communities who keep driving legislators to prioritize dyslexia.  Keep using your voice and story to advocate for student needs with your legislators and the new governor!  Each “learning” year prepares us for the next win!

 2018 Dyslexia Day Rally