A survey of reading services provided to students with reading disabilities
Christen, Margaret Harding
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This research investigated the extent of special education reading services provided to students with a diagnosed reading disability, and examined potential demographic differences in service delivery. Special education eligibility folders of 512 students from 11 Texas school districts were examined. Trained research teams utilizing a reliable data collection template conducted on-site visits and recorded student folder data during a six-week period. National statistics report that 37% of fourth grade students do not possess basic reading skills. Half of the students presently receiving special education services are qualified as a student with a learning disability and 80% of these students are reported to be learning disabled in the areas of basic reading or reading comprehension. Previous research studies have reported that students with a diagnosed disability in reading are not always provided the specialized instruction needed. This study reported on: (a) current practices in Texas for the 512 students whose files were reviewed with respect to special education reading services: (b) what state demographics may have influenced the provision of services; and (c) to what extent the amount of a student?s reading delay influenced the amount of special education services provided. Results showed that there was minimal provision of special education services for reading disabled students. When the results were analyzed by degree of disability the correlation was weak while the analysis by demographic membership showed a somwhat increased correlation.