ALTA - Academic Language Therapy Association

Fall 2015 — ALTA bul*le*tin

The Newsletter of the Academic Language Therapy Association

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President's Message

Fall Greetings ALTA Members!

October is Dyslexia Awareness Month and provides an opportunity to call national attention to issues surrounding Dyslexia, to acknowledge educators specializing in effective teaching strategies, and to celebrate the many achievements of children and adults with dyslexia. ALTA members are leading our field in state after state. From the classroom to the halls of higher education and to our state capitols, ALTA members are making a huge impact on the future of many students who struggle with dyslexia. Through your work, ALTA standards are changing the depth and breadth of knowledge and delivery of instruction expected for teachers of reading.
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IDA National Fall Conference Reminder

Just around the corner, on October 28-31st, is the IDA Fall Conference in Grapevine, TX at the Gaylord Texan Hotel. ALTA and IMSLEC will share the Alliance Exhibit Booth #223. Please stop by on Wednesday at 7:30 PM for the grand opening of the exhibit hall and pick up your Alliance membership ribbons to identify you as an Alliance member.
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Why Join ALTA? Spread the Word!!!

As ALTA members, you represent the highest standards of excellence in reading in your schools and communities. You are the teachers who are able to turn struggling readers into readers. You are the teachers who can change the future for students with dyslexia. You are the teachers to whom parents turn for expert advice. And, you are the teachers who greatly impact your peers. Often, ALTA members are asked, "How can I join an organization like ALTA?"
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ALTA Congressional Update

Congressmen and women in Washington, DC have been hard at work on behalf of dyslexia. The Bipartisan Dyslexia Caucus is chaired by Rep. Lamar Smith (R-TX) with Vice-Chair Julia Brownley (D-CA) and consists of members representing 34 states and the territory of Guam working to advance dyslexia initiatives. Is your congressman a member of the dyslexia caucus?
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Advocates for Literacy

Dear Chairmen Alexander and Kline and Ranking Members Murray and Scott:

On behalf of Advocates for Literacy, a coalition of 67 organizations focused onincreasing the federal commitment to improve literacy instruction through evidenced based practices,we urge you to maintain Title II, Part D language-Literacy Education for All,Results for the Nation-found in S. 1177, the Every Child Achieves Act (ECAA), as your Committees prepare for conference negotiations to reauthorize the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA).The purpose of this program is to improve student academic achievement in reading and writing by providing Federal support to States to develop and implement state-led comprehensive literacy instruction plans to ensure high-quality instruction and effective strategies in reading and writing from early education through grade 12.
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Keep in mind!

Attending ALTA approved events is a great way to garner your 10 yearly Continuing Education hours. When that's not possible, you must request ALTA CEU approval at least two weeks IN ADVANCE of the event.
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Alliance Exam Applications Now Online

We are pleased to inform you that ALTA has added an online application process to our website for future alliance exam applicants. This will help to make the application process easier and more efficient. Please feel free to explore the online process and spread the word to anyone who is interested in taking the exam in the future.
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Dear Academic Language Therapist - please wave your magic wand and make dyslexia go away

As a parent navigating the public education system, who has a child with dyslexia, what do I wish a language therapist could tell me? I want you to tell me my child's future is secure-that, after all our hard work (hers, yours and mine), my child will be reading well and be successful in school. That after she completes the research-based dyslexia program, her learning issues will be resolved and we'll be done.
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ALTA Members Selected to Guide Intervention in Colorado's First Public School to Address Dyslexia

ALTA members have begun a second year of leading intervention efforts at Odyssey Elementary, Colorado's first public school to address dyslexia. Teresa Hinote, CALT-QI, Tammy Kennington, CALT, and Bryn Abrahamsson, CALP, are teaching 90 children identified with profiles of dyslexia throughout the 2015-2016 school year.
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Texas Legislative Update

On June 17, Texas Governor Greg Abbott signed HB 202, the bill that continues licensure for Dyslexia Therapists and Practitioners, moving the program to the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR). The transition from the Department of State Health Services (DSHS) will take several months and licenses will continue to be issued through DSHS until that transition is complete, likely March 2016. The Dyslexia Licensing Advisory Committee which provides industry input on rules and implementation will be reestablished at TDLR during the 2016-2017 interim.
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Political Will and Teamwork: What It Will Take to Close the Reading Achievement Gap

In 2010, when asked by the head of a foundation what I might do first to address Connecticut's then-largest achievement gap in the country, I promptly responded, replace the DRA2 (Developmental Reading Assessment) with a real universal screener. That knee-jerk reaction set off a chain of events that has changed the face of literacy in our state.
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