Maine law 20-A M.S.R.   4701-B requires school administrative units to screen students in kindergarten through second grade who have difficulty in these areas:
A.  Phonological and phonemic awareness;
B.  Sound-symbol recognition;
C.  Alphabet knowledge;
D.  Decoding skills;
E.  Rapid naming skills; and
F.  Encoding skills.

However, the Maine Department of Education recommends universal screening for all students in kindergarten through second grade. The information collected through screening will assist teachers in planning and implementing appropriate instruction and intervention for all struggling readers, including those with the characteristics of dyslexia. 

Defining Dyslexia

Maine defines dyslexia using the International Dyslexia Association's definition:

“Dyslexia is a specific learning disability that is neurobiological in origin. It is characterized by difficulties with accurate and/or fluent word recognition and by poor spelling and decoding abilities. These difficulties typically result from a deficit in the phonological component of language that is often unexpected in relation to other cognitive abilities and the provision of effective classroom instruction. Secondary consequences may include problems in reading comprehension and reduced reading experience that can impede growth of vocabulary and background knowledge.”

Dyslexia in the Classroom: What Every Teacher Needs to Know (PDF, 706KB)

5 Questions Parents and Educators Can Ask to Start Conversations About Using Terms Like Learning Disabilities, Dyslexia, Dyscalculia, and Dysgraphia


Lisa Whitis
Dyslexia Coordinator