I was trying to help a mother who wanted her teenage daughter tested for dyslexia. The mother was told that the school does not do the testing, and they are unable to pay for testing out-of-pocket. Do you have any guidance to a place that will do this testing for a minimal cost?

Dr. Pierson's Response: 

Over the years, I have had this question a lot. Dyslexia is a specific learning disability (SLD), which is under the purview of the public schools [1].

So, if there is a suspected SLD, the student should go through the process of being assessed. One of the first hoops a student has to jump through is RTI -- Response to Intervention [2] -- I explain that challenge.

And here [3] I have a link about what the federal government says about that as well.

I typically refer people to the International Dyslexia Association list of providers for their state. You can find that list here [4].

It can be difficult to find someone who does the testing for a “minimal cost.” Good, comprehensive assessments are quite time-consuming and include preparation and intake, the time spent with the client administering the tests, scoring the tests, analyzing and interpreting the data, writing the report, and follow-up with the client. The cost tends to reflect all of that effort. And, unfortunately, dyslexia evaluations are not generally covered by insurance.