In the first two parts of this blog, I outlined compelling evidence about the extensive and probably excessive use of readers for Kentucky’s students with learning disabilities. These kids even get readers on the state’s reading assessments. That prevents education leaders and the public from knowing if any real effort is being expended to teach these special students to read.
I also provided evidence that using readers significantly inflates so-called “reading” scores for this student group.
The score inflation feature of the reading accommodation in testing certainly could explain why some Kentucky teachers are fighting tooth and nail to preserve this misleading, and very likely damaging, testing practice.
Those teachers who want to continue massive use of the reading accommodation on reading tests also complain that not reading the tests to these students would be unfair to those students.
In fact, exciting new information from Northern Kentucky makes it seem more likely that allowing schools an easy out from trying to teach many learning disabled kids to read is actually causing far more damage to those children. You see, Northern Kentucky schools are learning that notable numbers of students who have been carried as very weak or totally non-readers for some time can learn to read after all.