I am the guardian of my 7 year old granddaughter. I believe she has dyslexia and have expressed my concern to her teacher and special education director. The school suggested I have her eyes tested. I did and there were no issues found. The school had the occupational therapist do a test of her ability to follow objects with her eyes and concluded she has some issues with it. They want me to find someone to take her to for eye therapy.

The problem is because I only have guardianship of her the only insurance she has is Medicaid. Because I already took her for an eye exam she can’t have another one. I need help in finding someone to help her that accepts Medicaid.

I was hoping you could help me.

Dr. Pierson's Response: 

For your granddaughter to improve she needs a GOOD comprehensive assessment of her language and literacy skills by someone who understands the underlying oral language component to dyslexia (visit here: here [1].

You have a right to request this type of comprehensive assessment from the public schools. Learn more here [2].

That said, they may or may not know how to identify dyslexia (which falls under Specific Learning Disability) in the MI Administrative Rules for Special Education OR your granddaughter may not score poorly enough to qualify for services in the schools, despite being dyslexic.

I do not know how to find someone who accepts Medicaid in the Kalamazoo area. Here is the list of providers from the International Dyslexia Association for MI, although somewhat surprising no one is listed from Kalamazoo. Not everyone on this list will diagnose. (Read the list here) [3].

You could try the MI Dyslexia Institute (located here) [4]. They may have an office in Kalamazoo, although I do not believe they have a speech-language pathologist on their staff to fully assess the oral language issues, but you can ask.

You can also try SLD Read -- they have a Kalamazoo office. Their site is located here. [5] I think they may use volunteer tutors, so it is tutoring rather than therapy, but it would be cost-effective.

I hope this gives you some leads.