Dr. David Hurford, the director of Center for Reading at PSU says, “If you don’t have opportunity academically and our system is based on your ability to read, then your opportunities are very small.”
Pittsburg State and the Dyslexia Awareness Foundation have partnered together to bridge the gap of literacy to those affected by the disability.
The foundation was co-founded by Leland Hardy, after he met with Ameer Baraka, an african-american man that had been incarcerated and later found out that he had dyslexia.
With more than 60% of inmates being functionally illiterate, the trajectory of Baraka’s life may have been very different if he was diagnosed sooner.
Leland Hardy, Dyslexia Awareness Foundation says, “Ameer of course, really represents every aspect of what can go wrong when a child has undiagnosed dyslexia and also what can go right when dyslexia is diagnosed.”
And early detection of dyselxia is key.
The newly-formed partnership will work to screen local children for signs of the disbaility.
“We know what to do. We can identify kids as early as 4 or 5 who are going to struggle to learn how to read, and we can provide interventions to help them become better readers,” he says.