Our question: is how do we solve the issue of delayed detection of dyslexia in at-risk youth across the country? Implementing standardized testing in schools to evaluate children has already been done, but not effectively. Although schools have these tests, some don’t score, and some of those that do, do not have the resources to help children who exhibit learning disabilities. Our solution is to establish a 5-minute standardized test in physician offices, given when the child goes to their annual check-up. This exam will screen students across the country for flags that may/may not lead to dyslexia. The physicians can then give parents/guardians resources to help the children.

Proposition: The test that we are hoping to design and implement uses the resources already created--the DIBELS test. All we want to do is make the test more accessible for parents. Therefore, our thought is that by mandating it in the physician’s office during a child’s annual/semiannual checkup, the DIBELS will become a more uniform way of screening for dyslexia. The test would consist of a web-based version of the already created test to remove the issue of having to manually score the test. However, there is an oral portion to the DIBELS, so to combat this difficulty, we decided to make the test administered by the nurse. This way, they can input the child’s response to be scored along with the other parts of the tests. After the nurse administers this test during the vitals check portion of a child’s visit, our hope is to have the physician analyze the score and inform the parents of any next steps. The main purpose of moving the test into the physician’s office of because schools do not have the resources needed to provide for children with dyslexia, so they oftentimes overlook scoring the test and informing the parents in fear of having to exhaust school resources in providing for the child after the results are shown. Therefore, if the test is moved to the physician's office, the physician could inform the parents of resources that are available and/or direct them to more resources to refine the child’s diagnosis. This would place the responsibility of care on the parents rather than the school which will hopefully aid in the early detection and treatment of dyslexia in children.

Our Prototype (an online “blueprint”): We decided to outline our solution through diagrams and pictures, believing it would best tell the story:

Okay, great solution, but how will this work…?

Long Term Goal: Have it mandated in all states that during a child’s check-up--when they are old enough to start recognizing and pronouncing words--have children take the DIBELS. This is to better screen and detect risk for dyslexia.