Re: “How do you move the needle on literacy? This Eastside city is retraining teachers” [April 18, Ed Lab]:

Congratulations to Mercer Island for responding to Washington state law requiring younger students to be screened for dyslexia. Although kids K-5 will now be receiving science-based literacy instruction in the general education setting along with the teachers who will be instructing them, special education, middle and high school students and teachers will not be included.

In 2012, Mercer Island parents advocated for all general and special education students K-12 to receive science-based reading instruction and for all teachers K-12 to be trained. So many students, especially those with dyslexia, fail to keep up in middle and high school due to their lack of ability to decode language. Their comprehension suffers in all areas, including math and science.

Free appropriate public education (FAPE) includes all students, and we hope the Mercer Island School District and other districts will address the misfortune of students in middle school and high school who have struggled for years to keep up.

Thank you for your interest in helping all students.

Kim Sharman, Mercer Island