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North Carolina

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?


North Carolina HB 149 defines dyslexia, describes professional development requirements, and charges local education boards with reviewing screening and diagnostic use. HB 149 defines dyslexia as “A specific learning disability characterized by difficulty with accurate or fluent word recognition, or both, and by poor spelling and decoding abilities.” The North Carolina dyslexia handbook recognizes IDA’s definition of dyslexia.



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 law
Student Learning Disability Eligibility (Zirkel & Thomas 2010 Classification)?
RTI and SD permitted

According to North Carolina’s dyslexia handbook, “Public Schools are required through the Excellent Public Schools Act (HB 950/ S.L. 2102-142) to assess all kindergarten, first, second and third grade students with valid, reliable, formative and diagnostic reading assessments. Further, HB 149/S.L. 2017-127requires that “local boards of education shall review the diagnostic tools and screening instruments used for dyslexia, dyscalculia, or other specific learning disabilities to ensure they are age-appropriate and effective and shall determine if additional diagnostic and screening tools are needed.”

The guide further indicates that screening tools include, “Timed tests of letter naming or letter sound associations [...]Phonemic awareness assessments at kindergarten and first grade [...]After first grade, direct measures of decoding simple real and nonsense words and word recognition. Once students can read sentences and paragraphs, oral reading fluency (ORF) that combines accuracy and fluency is a powerful predictor. ORF can help educators find the students who read accurately, but very slowly and whose fluency difficulties will predict later problems in reading.”

§ 115C-83.1F states further in regard to K-3 reading assessment,  “Formative and diagnostic assessments and resultant instructional supports and services shall address oral language, phonological and phonemic awareness, phonics, vocabulary, fluency, and comprehension using developmentally appropriate practices.”

See § 115C-83 for parent notification requirements related to third grade retention.



North Carolina does not have pre-service legislation related to dyslexia.



According to HB 149, “Prior to the start of the 2017- 2018 school year, the State Board of Education shall ensure that ongoing professional development opportunities are made available to teachers and other school personnel on the identification of and intervention strategies for students with dyslexia, dyscalculia, or other specific learning disabilities. Prior to the start of the 2017-2018 school year, the State Board of Education shall also develop and make available. Information electronically to parents, educators, and other concerned groups that provides further data concerning characteristics of children with dyslexia, educational methodologies, screenings, and what is available to support the work with children with dyslexia in North Carolina.”




North Carolina does not have intervention legislation. See §115C-83 for intervention requirements related to third grade retention. State guidance documents promote the use of MTSS and instruction that is evidence-based, explicit, and multisensory.

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

Has Literacy SIMR?No


North Carolina Board of Education Dyslexia Resources

Decoding Dyslexia North Carolina

International Dyslexia Association North Carolina


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: 
07/27/2022 - 3:22am