Dyslexia Legislation

Has Legislation?Yes

SB140 defines dyslexia, requires screening and intervention, and provides for guidance from the Montana Office of Public Instruction and educator preparation.



SB140 states, “In alignment with the existing requirements of the Individuals With Disabilities Education Act, RULES OF THE BOARD OF PUBLIC EDUCATION, and rules of the superintendent of public instruction, school districts shall establish procedures to ensure that all resident children with disabilities, including specific learning disabilities resulting from dyslexia, are identified and evaluated for special education and related services as early as possible. (b) To support the goal of the people of Montana to develop the full educational potential of each person, articulated in Article X, section 1(1), of the Montana constitution, and to ensure early identification and intervention for students with dyslexia, a school district shall utilize a screening instrument aimed at identifying students at risk of not meeting grade-level reading benchmarks. The screening instrument must: (i) be administered to: (A) a child in the first year that the child is admitted to a school of the district up to grade 2; and (B) a child WHO HAS NOT BEEN PREVIOUSLY SCREENED BY THE DISTRICT AND who fails to meet grade-level reading benchmarks in any grade; (ii) be administered by an individual with an understanding of, and training to identify, signs of dyslexia; and (iii) be designed to assess developmentally appropriate phonological and phonemic awareness skills. (c) If a screening under subsection (3)(b) suggests that a child may have dyslexia or a medical professional diagnoses a child with dyslexia, the child's school district shall take steps to identify the specific needs of the child and implement best practice interventions to address those needs. This process may lead to consideration of the child's qualification as a child with a disability under the Individuals With Disabilities Education Act.”



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



SB140 “urges all entities within the state with authority over, or a role to play in, teacher preparation and professional development to ensure that teachers and other school personnel, especially those in the early grades, are well prepared to identify and serve students with dyslexia.”

Section 2 states that “Codification instruction. [Section 1] is intended to be codified as an 27 integral part of Title 20, chapter 7, part 4, and the provisions of Title 20, chapter 7, part 4, apply to [section 1].”



Montana’s Office of Public Instruction will provide guidance related to “best practice interventions to support students with dyslexia as early as possible, including 17 interventions for those students with dyslexia evaluated as requiring special education and those students with 18 dyslexia evaluated as not requiring special education; and 19 (iii) best practices for collaborating with and supporting parents of students with dyslexia.”Section 2 states that “Codification instruction. [Section 1] is intended to be codified as an 27 integral part of Title 20, chapter 7, part 4, and the provisions of Title 20, chapter 7, part 4, apply to [section 1].”

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

Has Literacy SIMR?No


Decoding Dyslexia Montana


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: 
05/28/2019 - 7:15pm