Authors: Gabriel, Rachael E..
Publication: American Educational Research Journal First published online: July 17, 2019 2019 | DOI: 10.3102/0002831219861945
In this study, I analyze written testimony submitted to the state legislature regarding Connecticut’s 2014 Act Concerning Dyslexia and Special Education (PA-14-39), in order to engage with the discourse and rhetoric occasioned by the policy-making process and investigate the phenomenon of dyslexia in contemporary education policy. Drawing on critical discursive psychology, positioning theory, and narrative policy analysis, I examine how dyslexia advocacy discourse forms a cohesive, compelling policy narrative. I argue that this narrative can be understood as a conversion narrative, which drives a privatization agenda in which public schools become mandated consumers for a growing dyslexia industry, and in which the nature of instruction for students with reading difficulties is narrowly prescribed.