Literacy Development for Students with Disabilities

The Florida Standards identify the knowledge and skills all students need in order to be successful in college and careers. Students with disabilities - students eligible under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) - must be challenged to excel within the general curriculum and be prepared for success in their post-school lives, including college and/or careers. Students with disabilities are a heterogeneous group with one common characteristic: the presence of disabling conditions that significantly hinder their abilities to benefit from general education (IDEA 34 CFR §300.39, 2004). How these high standards are taught and assessed is of the utmost importance in reaching this diverse group of students. In order for students with disabilities to meet high academic standards and to fully demonstrate their conceptual and procedural knowledge and skills in mathematics, reading, writing, speaking and listening (English language arts), their instruction must incorporate supports and accommodations, including:

  • Supports and related services designed to meet the unique needs of these students and to enable their access to the general education curriculum (IDEA 34 CFR §300.34, 2004).
  • An Individualized Education Program (IEP), which includes annual goals aligned with and chosen to facilitate their attainment of grade-level academic standards.
  • Teachers and specialized instructional support personnel who are prepared and qualified to deliver high quality, evidence-based, individualized instruction and support services.

Mastering the ability to read, spell, and write is fundamental to achieving academic success. Students with a variety of learning disabilities, including dyslexia, dyscalculia and dysgraphia, struggle with those skills despite receiving the same classroom instruction that benefits most students. Broward County Public Schools is committed to providing students identified with learning disorders with instruction that is effective and personalized in order to improve student outcomes.