Our mission is to assist parents, educators and students dealing with learning disabilities. We know that it can be confusing and frustrating trying to understand what it means to have a learning disability. On this page you will find some basic information about learning disabilities and how we can help.

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Specific Learning Disabilities Definition

Specific learning disability (SLD) is a term defined in the Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA) 2004. SLD means that someone has a history of problems in one or more of the following areas understand or using spoken or written language. These problems usually show up in the following areas:

  • Listening
  • Thinking
  • Speaking
  • Reading
  • Spelling
  • Math Calculations

This can include "such conditions as perceptual disabilities, brain injury, minimal brain dysfunction, dyslexia, and developmental aphasia."

You are not considered to have a learning disability if:

  • You have problems with your vision, hearing or motor skills disabilities;
  • Your disability is the result of an intellectual disability also known as mental retardation;
  • Your disability is the result of an emotional or behavioral disturbance
  • Your problems have occurred because of your environment, culture, or economics (amount of money you do or do not make)  (IDEA 2004, § 602.30, Definitions)

Students are tested for difficulty in the following areas to see if problems in understanding or using language can be pinpointed:

    1. Listening Comprehension
    2. Oral Comprehension
    3. Basic Reading
    4. Reading Comprehension
    5. Reading Fluency
    6. Math Calculation
    7. Math Reasoning
    8. Written Expression

Students will qualify as a student with a specific learning disability (SLD) in one or more of these eight areas.


ADD:  Attention Deficit Disorder
ADHD:  Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

AEP:  Alternative Educational Placement

AI:  Auditory Impairment

ARD:  Admission/Review/Dismissal Meeting

AT:  Assistive Technology

AU:  Autism

Benchmarks -Practice tests given during the year

BIP:  Behavior Intervention Plan

CATE:  Career and Technology Education

CBI:  Community Based Instruction
CBM:  Curriculum Based Measurement

CM:  Content Mastery

CTED:  Career and Technology Education for Disabled

DAEP:  District Alternative Educational Placement

DEBT:  Developmental Education Birth through Two

ED:  Emotionally Disabled

ELL:  English Language Learners

ESL:  English Second Language

EYS:  End of Year Services

FAPE: Free Appropriate Public Education

FBA:  Functional Behavioral Assessment

FIE:  Full Individual Evaluation

GIA/FS:  General Intellectual Ability/ Full Scale

IDEA:  Individual Disabilities Educational Act

ID: Intellectual Disabilities

IEP:  Individual Education Program

ISS:  In School Suspension

ITP:  Individual Transitional Plan

JJAEP:  Juvenile Justice Alternative Educational Placement

LPC:  Licensed Professional Counselor

LD:  Learning Disabled

LEP:  Limited English Proficiency

LPAC:  Language Proficiency Assessment Committee

LRE:  Least Restrictive Environment

LSSP:  Licensed Specialist in School Psychology

MDR:  Manifestation Determination Review

MR:  Mental Retardation

NCLB:  No Child Left Behind Act

OHI:  Other Health Impairment

OI:  Orthopedic Impairment

OT:  Occupational Therapy

PBS:  Positive Behavior Support

PGP:  Post Graduation Plan

PLOP:  Present Levels of Performance

PPCD:  Preschool Programs for Children with Disabilities

PT:  Physical Therapy

RTI:  Response to Intervention/Instruction

SI:  Speech Impaired

SLP:  Speech Language Pathologist

SPED:  Special Education

TAKS:  Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills

TBI:  Traumatic Brain Injury

VAC:  Vocational Adjustment Coordinator

VI:  Visual Impairment