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School have written my child off because she is dyslexic

(28 Posts)
TheoriginalLEM Tue 12-Jan-16 11:54:43

and i feel i am letting her down too.

she is in year 6. ed pdych report in y4/5.

year 5 not too bad but year 6 i hoped for more help.

No differentiation for her homework. big long words to spell. the same list as my friend's child who sailed through 11 plus.

brought it up with teacher. was told - oh its ok we know dd struggles we don't expect her to do it really. just do her tables etc. yet every week the same homework. every week she can't do it. i sit with her for hours trying to help without actually doing it for her.

but now it's coming up to sats. each homework is a mock test. each just marked right or wrong. i note where i have helped. where we couldn't work things out. no feedback.

its like oh well she is dyslexic she shouldn't worry about it.

she has a tutor and touch typing lessons. without which she couldn't read. she now loves to read .

but still describes herself as stupid because she cannot achieve her homework goals and goals in class.

Iliveinalighthousewiththeghost Tue 12-Jan-16 12:08:35

Aww bless her. She's far from stupid. Not all children are academic. I struggled all the way through school and flourished when I left. Please don't think nor should your dd think She has to write herself off. You'll probably find shes better at practical work .
It seems to be bad teaching to me. Why are they giving the same work to a child with dyslexia as they are to a non dyslexic child. To the best of my knowledge. They're supposed to give them work only to their ability, as it can cause a lasting fear of failure. And just the same as if something's too easy . It's got going to stimulate the child
Could be which is very unprofessional a case of. well she's moving school soon so why bother.
If it were my dd I'd go in and tell them I wasn't happy. After all teachers would not accept anything but the best for their children.
You don't mention about SENCO, does she not have one.
You're not letting her down you're an amazing mum doing your very best. The very fact that you started this thread. Demonstrates how much you care. But you're only human you can only do so much.

Iliveinalighthousewiththeghost Tue 12-Jan-16 12:09:32

Glad she's enjoying reading.

lostInTheWash Tue 12-Jan-16 12:12:32

Had this with spelling tests and mine - though mine aren't diagnosed wasn't much point at last school talking to other and waiting for this school take on them- teachers knew they were trying but they still lost break time.

It made them both worried, anxious and hate tests sad which the teachers knew and admitted was a concern but didn't stop the tests.

Try putting your concerns in writing about inability to do homework -sometime IME it means concerns are better dealt with.

Low expectations are a bloody pain - had it with our DS for being a boy and it was one reason why we didn't do private assessment for dyslexia for eldest yet despite many concerns as saw in last school a few child who did go down that route get no more help that already getting but getting their expectations very clearly capped.

IME there is lots of good advice on primary board to help with specific problems. My DC have made considerable progress in reading and spelling that's to sound foundation books - at very least it gives eldest a better plan for spelling longer words - split them up and learning odd bits.

Other than that is reassurance and little and often support work - though I worry that we might do so much support we could be masking underlying problems.

TheoriginalLEM Tue 12-Jan-16 12:15:49

its all about sats ofsted and the kent test.

the thing is my dd isn't stupid! she has a higher than average iq. but this is making her believe she is stupid

lostInTheWash Tue 12-Jan-16 12:16:22

Oh - I had a pretty bad time at primary with my then undiagnosed dyslexia but then did much better at secondary I attended - my spelling and reading issues didn't disappear but I had enough coping strategies and the focus was wider so things I struggled weren't major focus which helped my self esteem.

I also went to a good university and have post graduate qualifications too. My parents emphasising hard work and keeping trying was a massive help there.

Iliveinalighthousewiththeghost Tue 12-Jan-16 12:18:22

They're contradicting themselves though. One minute they're giving her work that they know she'll struggle with, yet next minute they're saying things like. "Oh we don't really expect her to do it", Well of course she's not going to do when its above her and this is said with great sensitivity and respect above her academic capabilities.

eloquent Tue 12-Jan-16 12:20:13

Bless her.
She isn't stupid, poor thing. Thing is, this could end up very demoralising for her. The school need to being more pro-active i think.

I know a guy who is dyslexic has worked hard all his life and is currently being head hunted for MD roles. He's exceptionally intelligent.

Just keep letting your daughter know she can do whatever she likes! It may take a little longer, be a little harder, but it'll be worth it! And have a word with school. I'm sure they should be supporting better.

lostInTheWash Tue 12-Jan-16 12:25:36

I believed I was stupid too - but thank god wasn't in a grammar school area - the bog standard non selective comprehensive was a decent school and first weeks they did their own tests which put me in top sets.

I still thought of myself as stupid up until I got some of the best GCSE exam results in my school. I just worked hard as that what my parents focused on.

Talk again too the school see if they can modify their approach to your DD - setting homework she can't do seems a waste of everyone time. Is there more support the school could/should be putting in place? Can they give you more information about where/why she is struggling with the homework? I suspect it may be a case of keep at the school with same sort of questions and see if anything improves.

DesertOrDessert Tue 12-Jan-16 12:32:10

I could just cut and paste lost's post, as it describes me also.
As I moved up through the school years, and there was less focus on beautiful hand writing, with correct spellings life became easier.
Coping strategies are the way to go.

Is there something outside of school she could do that would allow her to show what she is good, and not be the worst at?

Rather than help her through the homework, what would happen if you requested 2 copies, or if you could photocopy somewhere. Then let her try with the original copy, and submit to school. Then you and her work through the copy (and you can do the writing now grin) to give her the understanding.

kesstrel Tue 12-Jan-16 12:35:13

You could consider trying the Sound Foundations books that Lost mentioned. Many (most?) schools have no idea how to teach spelling.

thelittleredhen Tue 12-Jan-16 12:40:09

Have a look at Young Dyslexics

It's aimed at children your DD's age and she might find the videos of children talking about their dyslexia helpful?

I'd arrange to have a chat with the school and make them understand that setting work for your DD that they know she can't achieve is doing nothing for her self-esteem and that you're not happy with it continuing. Good luck. She's not the only year 6 in the world with dyslexia and there will be guidance and alternative home work tasks for her.

TheoriginalLEM Tue 12-Jan-16 12:57:20

part of me just thinks i don't want to rock the biat she has a few months left at this school and despite all i have said. she loves school.

FeatheredBumpkin Tue 12-Jan-16 14:12:29

Dyslexia is a specific learning disorder on reading and writing and has feck all to do with whether someone is 'academic' or not. (As an aside I went to a very highly regarded uni and there were lots of students doing very well there who had dyslexia.)

Has your dd's school not got some kind of action plan in place on the back of her diagnosis? Or have they just let her get on with it and have you picked up the slack? I am peripherally aware that there are lots of good study techniques/aids for dyslexia arpund and a good school should be implemented something. I would be tempted to rock the boat if only because the primary school will be sending all information across to the secondary, and perhaps it will be harder to deny your dd resources if she already has them in place iyswim? Or at least it will be less hard to fight for them. Does she get extra time in her exams already?

itshappenedagain Tue 12-Jan-16 14:25:10

I'm sorry to hear nothing us being done...get in now before it knocks your dd's confidence. I'm a teacher and dyslexic, it is very poor practice not to differentiate anyway, but especially so for a child with a specific need. My DS in in yr 4, had just had an assessment and a needs assessment, meaning he gets extra support as well as equipment and software to help.
You need to stand your ground, school tried to fob me off at first, but when they realised I wasn't backing down started to put more in place to help.
He too loves school. Make an appointment with the sendco and the teacher and raise your concerns, make a just beforehand, then agree a second meeting a month after to see what has changed. thanks

BertrandRussell Tue 12-Jan-16 14:34:00

Have you been in touch with the senco at the school she's going on to?

TheoriginalLEM Tue 12-Jan-16 14:37:34

Haev had meeting after mmeting with head, SENCO, etc - all the right noises are made but still this homework issue. She does get extra help and intervention during the school day to be fair.

My approach is going to be, is my DD having to struggle to do the same as everyone else all day if she is being set the same homework as the brightest child in the class?

I appreciate that differentiation is the bane of teachers' lives (well, one of them) but she is not going to learn anything like this.

I fear i am going to become one of "those" parents and will come wiht a big red flag next to my name for when DD starts secondary school.

TheoriginalLEM Tue 12-Jan-16 14:39:04

Bertrand, yes, but pretty informally at the moment as we don't get confirmation of school places until March and the school I have applied for is oversubsribed so they won't discuss specifics but yes, as soon as i know what is what I am going to be in touch with them.

lostInTheWash Tue 12-Jan-16 14:40:47

If it is spelling:
apple and pears

Good programs.

There are probably lots of areas that have problems - but little and often had proven very effective with my DC not everything at once.

Are times tables a problem? - great way to help remember them
online maths programs - mathsfactor worked for us or times attack I think - was a free download game style test thing they liked.

I'd start with a polite letter listing all your concerns and asking for a time to discuss with her teacher - I don't see why that would be rocking the boat. If there is any support they can offer there is half a school year for your DD to benefit if there isn't - or what they have isn't really any good but they should be trying to mitigate damage to your DD self esteem.

It might be a good idea in open evenings at secondary to ask some questions about the provisions they could offer.

BertrandRussell Tue 12-Jan-16 14:48:14

I fear i am going to become one of "those" parents and will come wiht a big red flag next to my name for when DD starts secondary school."

Not necessarily a bad thing. Funding has been so cut to the bone for additional needs in secondary schools that I'm afraid there just isn't enough to go round. And you might well have to fight for a bit for your dd. with the best will in the world, the ones who are perceived as coping will be at the back of the queue.....

TheoriginalLEM Tue 12-Jan-16 15:03:20

i totally understand the funding issues.we have been self funding a tutor for dd and its been tough. the tutor is amazing but £££ we are so very lucky that we have now been offered a grant for these costs. totally independent of the school.

TheoriginalLEM Tue 12-Jan-16 15:05:15

lost - i thinkher tutor doesa spplesandpears.

i will definitely look at percy parker. tables are a massive problem.


lostInTheWash Tue 12-Jan-16 16:18:28

This is the Timez Attack game: Timez Attack there is a free download version.

The school finally did a bit of apple and pears with eldest but it wasn't frequent enough. We found 20 minutes a day bought the two books needed for the level they tested at - it's straight forward just say what is on the page of teacher copy over 18 months progressed through the books and there has been a massive improvement.

Atenco Tue 12-Jan-16 16:40:23

Of course she is not stupid, but those are very mixed messages the school are sending, giving her homework and then saying then don't expect her to do it. My cousin had undiagnosed dyslexia and still rose to absolute top of his profession.

I learnt my Spanish in Mexico, then wanted to do A-level Spanish in Ireland. I asked my teacher if there would a problem with my different pronounciation and terminology, he said that there wouldn't be, and then proceeded to correct me everytime I pronounced something Mexican style. I'm sorry to say I just gave up.

WhirlwindHugs Tue 12-Jan-16 17:03:43

I think you are going to have to make a fuss - you really don't want her going to secondary thinking she's stupid!

I can't imagine what the school thinks it is doing - it shouldn't be a big deal to give her spellings at the right level.

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