ALTA - Academic Language Therapy Association

Spring 2017 — ALTA bul*le*tin

The Newsletter of the Academic Language Therapy Association

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Texas Legislative Update

The 85th Legislative Session is at its halfway point. Thanks to a successful Dyslexia Day at the Capitol many legislators and staff are more aware of dyslexia and legislation filed this session. Rep. Rick Miller filed three bills, one for per pupil funding, one to require the dyslexia therapist license for those in private therapy and a third bill addressing early screening in public schools with reporting of those numbers, ensuring that the state has qualified individuals overseeing dyslexia programs and creating an online list of training opportunities for educators of dyslexia.
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TDLR and the Dyslexia Therapists and Practitioners Advisory Committee

At the close of the 84th Legislative Session, the Texas Legislature passed Senate Bill 202 transferring several occupational licenses from the Department of State Health Services (DSHS) to the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR). The licensure for Dyslexia Therapists and Practitioners was one of seven health related occupations to be transferred, reinforcing that dyslexia is not simply an "education issue", but rather a health related issue that affects the education of those coping with the disability.
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Texas Dyslexia Identification Academy

Texas is ahead of the game when it comes to identifying and providing intervention for students with dyslexia. A dyslexia law has been in place since 1986 which requires public schools to test for dyslexia and provide treatment for any student determined to have dyslexia or related disorders. Guidance to assist in the implementation of the law has been in place since 1987 with the most recent revision being in 2014 (The Texas Dyslexia Handbook; Procedures Concerning Dyslexia and Related Disorders Revised 2014).
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The Board of Directors would like to welcome new members to ALTA

The Board of Directors would like to welcome all the new members to ALTA. We want to welcome those of you joining as a CALP or CALT, thank you for choosing to be a part of the ALTA family. You have joined a dedicated group of highly trained individuals active in the field of dyslexia and related disorders. With your training and knowledge, we know you will be an essential part of the lives of those you serve.
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Formatting Your ALTA Credentials

We recognize that ALTA members represent the highest standards in the field of written language skills. In an effort to increase name-recognition and branding of ALTA as a professional organization, the ALTA board encourages members to use a consistent format when listing credentials. Please take a moment to check your credentials and make adjustments as necessary. [Note: Not all designations are applicable for all members.]
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ALTA Chapters

Academic Language Therapy Association Chapters function to provide local professional networking, fundraising events for dyslexia legislation and continuing education opportunities in parts of the country where ALTA members may be few in number but are growing. Increasingly states are passing dyslexia legislation resulting in parents and school districts in need of highly trained, skilled and ALTA certified practitioners and therapists. There is growing national awareness of ALTA, and our 30 years of experience as a certifying organization with consistent, high standards. ALTA Chapters serve to promote excellence in the field of reading and writing instruction.
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ALTA Member Heads Learning Services at Children's Hospital Colorado

Colorado Literacy & Learning Center LISCP graduate Michelle Qazi, M.Ed., CALT, is leading the way for Learning Specialists at Children's Hospital Colorado. As Associate Clinical Manager of Learning Services, Qazi oversees both inpatient and outpatient learning services. To learn more about the important work Qazi is doing, please read our interview with her.
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Brownsville ISD Conference

Through the work of Virginia Gonzales and Elsa Cardines-Hagen, ALTA was a sponsor of 2017 BISD Literacy Day presented by Brownsville Independent School District. The conference included a keynote address by David Bowles, and a sessions by Dr. Elaine Cheesman, Ph.D., a Southern Region Texas ALTA Chapter meeting, and an update from Alice Womack Marsel on dyslexia related bills in the Texas Legislature.
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CALPs Receive COCLD Recognition and Scholarships

Sarah Scroggins and Kelly Obeginski were selected by the Colorado Council of Learning Disabilities to receive top honors for their work with children with learning disabilities. The two teachers, currently completing their second year in CLLC's Literacy Intervention Specialist Certification Program (LISCP) offered in a partnership with Colorado College, were presented award checks for $1,800 as they were recognized at CCLD's Math on the "Planes" Conference on February 25, 2017.
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The ALTA Virginia Chapter

The ALTA Virginia Chapter had a productive meeting in October 2016, at which time members showcased and shared on a wide variety of favorite decodable text resources. Chapter members had the opportunity to look closely at these "most useful" materials, learn when and how they are most effectively used, and how to locate the suppliers.
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Dyslexia Is Not a Dirty Word

"Dyslexia is not a Dirty Word" YouTube Channel is not your typical source of information about dyslexia. Jennifer LaHaie's goal is to make this information relevant to parents, teachers, administrators, and anyone else that is impacted by dyslexia.
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