KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
October 16, 2019
By Natalie Cook Clark
Katy Mayor Bill Hastings proclaimed that Katy would join the nation in recognizing October as National Dyslexia Awareness Month at this week's City Council meeting. The City of Katy presented the declaration to The Dyslexia Initiative, a non-profit organization that educates and supports families of children with dyslexia.
Stats Show Dyslexics are Not Alone
Nearly 70% of children who struggle with reading are dyslexic yet it's still a struggle to get proper diagnosis and quick services.
"In the beginning of my journey, I felt isolated and alone, groping in the dark, and I hated it," says Ashley Roberts, one of the founding members of Dyslexia Initiative.
Dyslexia Initiative was created to bring parents together who are fighting for their dyslexic children’s educational and emotional rights within the system.
"We want to ensure our children reach their maximum potential by enabling them to reach their academic and social potential," says Roberts.
An Important Proclamation for Parents of Dyslexic Children
For Katy Councilmember and Mayor Pro Tem, Chris Harris, the proclamation was personal.
"I'm very happy that Mayor Hastings has proclaimed October Dyslexic Awareness Month in the City of Katy. As a parent of a dyslexic child, it is important to raise awareness and support those in the community with dyslexia," says Harris.
Mother and Author Offers Support, Knowledge
Author Elaine Mellon became an expert on the subject as she learned and navigated dyslexia through her son.
"Schools often treat dyslexia as a disability," says Mellon. "Dyslexia is not a disability. These children just learn differently and often times don't do well when they are expected to follow a specific mold."
Mellon is the author of "Unreal Education: Beyond Report Cards." She shares her journey in helping her son (now grown and very successful) and all that she has learned about dyslexia.
"My best advice to parents who are watching their child struggle with dyslexia is to always concentrate on their strengths. Don't take away the things they are good at as a punishment," says Mellon. "Also, don't be afraid to ask a lot of questions. You are your child's best advocate."
A Literacy Crisis
"Our country is in a literacy crisis with more than our dyslexic children suffering under poor reading methodologies," says Roberts. "The statistics are real and terrifying, and to fix dyslexia, we must fix our nation’s approach to how we teach reading to all children."
A Big Step to Awareness
In acknowledging this month and raising awareness for dyslexia, Katy is taking a step to support those who struggle everyday with dyslexia. Parents no longer need to feel alone and frustrated thanks to organizations like Dyslexia Initiative and parents who are willing to share their stories and knowledge such as Elaine Mellon.