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Dyslexia/Dyscalculia- school say there will be no extra resource

(16 Posts)
hettie Thu 04-Dec-14 11:25:52

Hi all,
I’ve posted this in special needs as well as I’m not sure where it best fits (sorry). I really need some advice/information on how to access additional support for my ds.
He is in year 3 and we had a private assessment done (school would not have actioned anything as he is not ‘failing’). We shared the findings of the report with his year teacher. Basically he is below average for his year on mathematical understanding, some aspects of writing/spelling but average for reading and understanding. The detailed report makes it clear that he is also in the 99th centile for general ability (verbal reasoning etc) and should be flying (academically speaking) but because of the specific difficulties he has (working memory 30th centile) he is finding particular things tricky.
In the classroom he is average, struggling a bit with maths, but according to his teacher not struggling enough to warrant any individual or extra support (other than her trying to adapt/individualise stuff in a whole class setting)….. Yet…..She was basically very candid and said that there were kids who were struggling much more and that there was only so much resource available. Whist I understand her point, I’m not terribly happy with it. So…. It would be helpful to get an understanding of the system so we can work out what to do next. I have some specific questions which I hope someone might have the time to help me with?
In a LEA primary school who decides who gets extra resource and on what basis?
Do the school or the LEA have any obligation/statutory requirement to provide extra help?
If so, is there a process to access this?
Does he have to be failing to access this? Or can it be about him not being able to access the curriculum/reach his potential?
And lastly… is there a page/resource that will help me navigate all of this? I suspect we are in for a long uphill battle…..
Thank you so much for taking the time to read this- any advice gratefully received…

hettie Thu 04-Dec-14 20:48:27

forgot to add- I'm going to find it a little tricky to provide quality suport at home as I am also dyslexic and can't cope with numbers grin... just can't wuite beleive this is ok?

BetweenTwoLungs Thu 04-Dec-14 21:44:52

Did the private assessment explicitly confirm that he is dyslexic or have dyscalculia?

lemisscared Thu 04-Dec-14 21:48:26

My DD is severely dyslexic, she gets some extra help but she is in year 5 now and probably only working at year 2 levels. We also pay for an external tutor which is the best thing we have ever done as she has really picked up with specialist tuition.

Mitzi50 Thu 04-Dec-14 21:55:58

www.dyslexiaaction.org.uk/files/dyslexiaaction/guide_to_help_parents_and_carers_navigate_the_changes_in_special_educational_needs_and_disability_provision.pdf

The above will guide you through what you should expect from his school.

If you can afford specialist tuition, that would be a good option.

hettie Thu 04-Dec-14 22:37:39

Between.....yes, both confirmed... Specialist tuition may be an option, but the Poor chap is knackered after school. He really tries and the extra effort kills him. I'd much rather it was in school... Maybe I'm naïve but shouldn't they be enabling his learning?

poppy70 Thu 04-Dec-14 23:01:31

There is so little money in schools now. There are so many children who ideally should get so much more support then they do. Children who are behind get provision but if your son isn't that far behind he probably isn't.

Mitzi50 Thu 04-Dec-14 23:12:09

Sadly provision in schools is really variable. I was told my daughter was not dyslexic for most of her schooling. She was eventually assessed and her dyslexic profile is similar to your son's - very high verbal reasoning etc but extremely low working memory and phonological awareness. This balanced out and she was average/slightly below average throughout primary but by working extremely hard pulled herself up for GCSEs and A levels. She is now at Russell Group Uni studying history but has had to work considerably harder than her peers throughout secondary to get similar results. This is why your son is so tired - he is probably working 3 or 4x harder than his friends.

I am a teacher and I assumed that the SENCOs at her schools were knowledgable - the reality is that they were not. I would make yourself very knowledgable about dyslexia and your son's right to support within school and, if you can afford it, get specialist tuition.

lemisscared Fri 05-Dec-14 08:42:33

Hettie i felt the same but it became apparent that the school simply were not able to do this. Any extra sessions were done with the TA and dd needs Specialist help. Her tutor is a retired senco who is also an ed psych with post grad qualifications specific to teaching dyslexics.

I also felt the same about dd having to do extra work but she loves it and looks forward to going.

If you are in the south east pmme and ill give you details

hettie Fri 05-Dec-14 08:52:42

In the south west unfortunately but thanks... So the upshot is we'll have an immense battle on our hands sad. I need to arm myself with LEA policy etc don't i ? So rubbish (not must for DS, but all kids with any additional needs). Out of interest is there any precedent for taking time out of school to get additional support paid by us? I'd rather that than have 'extra' on top of school day...

Primaryteach87 Fri 05-Dec-14 09:05:18

Hi, lots of people will tell you what should happen. In reality school budgets are seriously crippling at the moment. Many head teachers have had to raid the special needs budget to keep absolutely essential teaching assistants to support children who would be dangerous to themselves or others if they didn't have 1:1. In most counties havibg a statement of SEN or the new alternative doesn't come with any extra funding AND the threshold is crazily high. In other words it's now Damn near impossible to support children in the way teachers shoukd and want to. Practically, I would suggest looking for computer programmes recommended by dyslexia action which can be done at home or in the classroom. If you can afford it, get a tutor.

Heels99 Fri 05-Dec-14 09:50:15

Some independent schools have good dyslexia provision so worth having a look at those

Bonsoir Fri 05-Dec-14 10:13:39

hettie - I really feel for you and your DS. One of my close friends is dyslexic - she is very intelligent and a gifted artist but she is of course ill-placed to support her own dyslexic son with his school work. She/he use a variety of external providers for support (we are in France where support for dyslexia in mainstream school is non-existent). I myself am "on call" for my friend's son and give him between 1 and 6 hours a week of help. Do you have friends or neighbours who could help in kind in return for other favours?

neversaydie Fri 05-Dec-14 11:15:16

My DS has a similar profile, and really struggled in primary school - no help at all because he was very bright, so just about managed average achievement. He had an EP assessment at 13, and she suggested the Cogmed programme. He found it tough, but we could see the difference, particularly in his organisational ability. He had a retest last month, as approaching public exams, and the working memory score has gone up from 25th centile to 50th. Still a huge difference compared with his verbal reasoning score (98th centile) but much much better.

Incidentally his reading is pretty good, although it is becoming increasingly clear that he is doing an awful lot of context guessing, which is more of a problem as he heads into exams. Where he struggles is organisation - anything from getting homework in on time to structuring an essay - and an almost pathological aversion to writing anything by hand.

I should probably also admit that he is at an independant day school. We pay for the assessments but they will action the recommendations. We cracked and moved him when he was 10.

hettie Fri 05-Dec-14 19:46:17

Thanks everyone. Independent school is a non starter. I fear the cost of tutoring may still be a bit of a killer.
Bonsoir it's a good idea, I think dh may have to take some of the load too. I can help with teaching mind mapping etc. Will talk to dyslexia action and inquire about tutors locally...

TheNewWitchOfSWL Fri 05-Dec-14 22:50:55

oh just wrote a new thread about my daughter before reading this one here.
I can't pay for private school or tutors, and I am also a non native speaker and terrible with numbers…
Any games or online tutoring suggestions will be appreciated. I am currently using Maths Factor but looking for some spelling games too please.

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