Today marks 22 years since President George Bush Sr. signed the Americans with Disabilities Act. Many individuals with hidden disabilities shy away from considering that they have a true disability and that is certainly open to personal preference. I often remind people that students with hidden disabilities like attention deficit, dyslexia, dysgraphia, Aspergers, and others are very bright students with high IQs who are talented, and creative and who happen to have a disability. Many of those students go on to college or professional schools receiving accolades and awards for their accomplishments. For example, Dr. Carol Greider happens to be dyslexic and was one of our recent Nobel prize winners for science and medicine.
On this 22nd Anniversary, I am reminded that without the ADA many of these students would not have received the accommodations they qualify for and may have even been discriminated against in a college or university environment. Discrimination still exists but with the ADA these students with disabilities are guaranteed protection by our legal system. I’m thankful for the many people who have fought for equal rights for all individuals with disabilities. While we celebrate the 22nd anniversary of the ADA, let’s also celebrate some famous people with dyslexia.