It’s hard to imagine anyone can make it through school without being able to read. From filling out a medical questionnaire to reading road signs, illiteracy can be crippling. Yet, in 2018, 1 in 4 children grow up without learning to read proficiently. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, as many as 17.7% of our population in Kootenai County lacks basic literacy skills. That means almost 2 in 10 children living here in Kootenai County are not receiving the help they need to become proficient readers.

Living with undiagnosed dyslexia is difficult. Being scolded for misspellings on homework and writing errors, ridiculed for mistakes, and teased for reading text inaccurately leave many kids surrounded by negativity that damages self-esteem. Kids, who struggle, know they struggle. They are confronted daily by the question, “Why is this so difficult for me?” Often, they submit to the only logical answer they can come up with, “I must be stupid.” Nothing could be further from the truth. Children with dyslexia have normal or even gifted intelligence.

Often these are the kids that try hard in school, yet continue to get poor grades. They are also the ones who are creative, have remarkable insights, and a strong work ethic. If you know a child like this, there is help available. Research clearly shows that the correct remediation will give the skills necessary to become a proficient reader. Don’t wait to find help.