State Education Agency (SEA) Dyslexia Legislation

Has Legislation?Yes

Parent Opt-Out/Consent Procedures by Law?
SEA Recognizes IDA Definition?
SEA Recognizes State Definition?
SEA Has Dyslexia Specialist?


This law contains provisions concerning the identification of reading difficulties, parent involvement and notification, intervention, staff development, local literacy plans, and assessment.

Minnesota Chapter 125A.01 defines dyslexia using IDA’s definition.



Parents Must Be Notified of Results?
SEA Publishes List of Screeners?
Annual Reporting to the SEA?
Response to Intervention for Student Learning Disability Eligibility in 2010?
Permitted by law
Severe Discrepancy for Student Learning Disability Eligibility in 2010?
Permitted by guidelines
Student Learning Disability Eligibility (Zirkel & Thomas 2010 Classification)?
RTI and SD permitted (State uses SRBI instead of RTI and there is other relevant SRBI legislation)

According to Subd. 2 (Identification; report) of Minnesota statutes, "(a) Each school district shall identify before the end of kindergarten, grade 1, and grade 2 students who are not reading at grade level before the end of the current school year and shall identify students in grade 3 or higher who demonstrate a reading difficulty to a classroom teacher. Reading assessments in English, and in the predominant languages of district students where practicable, must identify and evaluate students' areas of academic need related to literacy. The district also must monitor the progress and provide reading instruction appropriate to the specific needs of English learners. The district must use a locally adopted, developmentally appropriate, and culturally responsive assessment and annually report summary assessment results to the commissioner by July 1. The district also must annually report to the commissioner by July 1 a summary of the district's efforts to screen and identify students with: (1) dyslexia, using screening tools such as those recommended by the department's dyslexia and literacy specialist"

State Recognized Screeners

See the state department of education website for current information on screeners.



Minnesota does not have pre-service legislation related to dyslexia.



According to state law, “Each district shall use the data under subdivision 2 to identify the staff development needs so that: (1) elementary teachers are able to implement comprehensive, scientifically based reading and oral language instruction in the five reading areas of phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension as defined in section 122A.06, subdivision 4, and other literacy-related areas including writing until the student achieves grade-level reading proficiency; (2) elementary teachers have sufficient training to provide comprehensive, scientifically based reading and oral language instruction that meets students' developmental, linguistic, and literacy needs using the intervention methods or programs selected by the district for the identified students; (3) licensed teachers employed by the district have regular opportunities to improve reading and writing instruction; (4) licensed teachers recognize students' diverse needs in cross-cultural settings and are able to serve the oral language and linguistic needs of students who are English learners by maximizing strengths in their native languages in order to cultivate students' English language development, including oral academic language development, and build academic literacy; and (5) licensed teachers are well trained in culturally responsive pedagogy that enables students to master content, develop skills to access content, and build relationships.”




According to §125A.56, “(a) Before a pupil is referred for a special education evaluation, the district must conduct and document at least two instructional strategies, alternatives, or interventions using a system of scientific, research-based instruction and intervention in academics or behavior, based on the pupil's needs, while the pupil is in the regular classroom. The pupil's teacher must document the results. A special education evaluation team may waive this requirement when it determines the pupil's need for the evaluation is urgent. This section may not be used to deny a pupil's right to a special education evaluation. (b) A school district shall use alternative intervention services, including the assurance of mastery program under section 124D.66, or an early intervening services program under subdivision 2 to serve at-risk pupils who demonstrate a need for alternative instructional strategies or interventions. (c) A student identified as being unable to read at grade level under section 120B.12, subdivision 2, paragraph (a), must be provided with alternate instruction under this subdivision that is multisensory, systematic, sequential, cumulative, and explicit.

§122A.06 states, “Comprehensive, scientifically based reading instruction" includes a program or collection of instructional practices that is based on valid, replicable evidence showing that when these programs or practices are used, students can be expected to achieve, at a minimum, satisfactory reading progress. The program or collection of practices must include, at a minimum, effective, balanced instruction in all five areas of reading: phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary development, and reading comprehension. Comprehensive, scientifically based reading instruction also includes and integrates instructional strategies for continuously assessing, evaluating, and communicating the student's reading progress and needs in order to design and implement ongoing interventions so that students of all ages and proficiency levels can read and comprehend text, write, and apply higher level thinking skills. For English learners developing literacy skills, districts are encouraged to use strategies that teach reading and writing in the students' native language and English at the same time.”

Additionally, state guidance documents promote the use of MTSS.

Literacy State-identified Measurable Result (SIMR) - Part B

Has Literacy SIMR?No


Decoding Dyslexia Minnesota

International Dyslexia Association Upper Midwest


Zirkel, P. A., & Thomas, L. B. (2010). State laws for RTI: An updated snapshot. Teaching Exceptional Children, 42(3), 56-63.

Gearin, B., Turtura, J., Kame’enui, E. J., Nelson, N. J., & Fien, H. (2018). A Multiple Streams Analysis of Recent Changes to State-Level Dyslexia Education Law. Educational Policy, 0895904818807328.

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Last modified: 
10/31/2023 - 9:16pm