My daughter is in year 1 at an Infant State School. I just had the school report and meeting with the teacher and It was as I expected; she is bottom of the class and behind compared to her peers in the majority of the areas: writing, English and maths. She is having all the support she needs: speech therapy and interventions groups from her current school and support with reading at home and she is making progress, but she is still behind and I doubt it she will catch up.
There is suspicious of dyslexia but the school won't access her until she is in year 2.
She will need to move to a junior school in year 3 which is not as great as the Infant and does not provide much support for children with special needs.
My question is:
If she has dyslexia will she be better moving to a private school for year 3 with smaller classes and dyslexia support. Or will she be better in the state school where the majority of her friends will go, and paying additional tutoring after school privately.
Any advice will be greatly appreciated.
Not all private schools live up to promises regarding learning support and small classes. You may also get charged for one to one support. You might be better investing in reinforcing the fundamentals at home, either yourself or with a specialist tutor. It may not be dyslexia , but linked to her s & l issues such as auditory processing. Presumably you've had sight (including visual tracking) and hearing checked recently.
Thank you Lizs. She had eyes tests but not sure about visual tracking?is this a different test.? does the optometrist o this?
She also had a few hearing tests before she started school but she was never that helpful and sometimes she would do what she was asked for and some others she would not, so they never knew if she was hearing or not and she stopped having them. This was due to speech problems.
Maybe I should request them with the GP again. Her ostheopath mentioned glue ear but the GP never mentioned anything when he checked her.
Visual tracking is a specific test. You would need to request it and check if the optometrist can do it or would refer you. I'd recommend ruling out the potential physical causes first. It is often in a school environment that such things become more problematic.
Thank you. I will check this.
She also has mild strabismusin in one eye which the ostheopath is checking
What does the optometrist say about the strabismus. That certainly could be causing an issue with reading?
The optometrist that did her eye test did not mention anything about the strabismus and the test was good; it was the Osteopath who spotted the problem as is very mild; I had noticed there was an issue with one eye but nobody else had noticed it not even my husband as is not all the time.
I will try to see where can I get the visual tracking test; I went to the Optometrist yesterday to ask and they had no idea.
She does has other issues with troat clearing on ocassions and I think she does suffer from reflux and glue ear which may affect her performance a school and behaviour sometimes.
In terms of the school I don't think that you can say that private or state would be better. It so much depends upon the school and how they acknowledge the issues and then the support they give. Some state schools are excellent, others will do their best to ignore the issues. Some private schools will give full support and others will not. Talk to the school you are considering and be open and honest about the concerns and ask them how they would support your child if she was to attend there. Small classes are a bonus but only if all other support is good.
Have a look here [http://www.bdadyslexia.org.uk/search]] for a behavioural optometrist in your area, they will do a proper assessment for you.
I would advise against private schools and point you in the opposite direction: state schools in deprived areas are often the ones with the best resources and experience to help her progress.
I paid for the dyslexia test myself as the school insisted that it was "just a boys thing". It was very extensive (lasted from 10 am to 6 pm) and costed about £500 (this was years ago).
His school was not very interested in reading the report, but it provided me with very good advice and references on how to help DS while I found him a new school.
I found a specialist who do this test and will also book her another hearing test.
Yesterday she wrote a happy birthday card to her friend which my husband has written for her so she could copy from it and she wrote it all back to front and right to left. I could not even read it until my husband point out it was back to front. She has done right on some other ocaccions but does do mirror writting sometimes. Something like this:
yadhtrib yppah (happy birthday)
I registered for Maths factor and the plan is to do a bit every day on top of her reading so she does not keep falling behind; however I do know there are some issues; she had problems with speech from an early age and is still having speech therapy at school; it took her a long time to get a preferred hand for writting, eating, etc; she sometimes writtes some letter and numbers back to front; etc.
*"*^*Yesterday she wrote a happy birthday card to her friend which my husband has written for her so she could copy from it and she wrote it all back to front and right to left*^*"*
That is a very common problem with young children and IME more common when they are trying to copy from a model. Would she be able to write the letters if you said the next sound she needed in order to spell the words?
There are a lot of apps and educational websites that can help dyslexic children at this age : I have used Nessy Reading and Spelling which is good, although a bit repetitive. I think Nessy also has a phonics app that your daughter can play with on the go.
Even if your daughter is not dyslexic, she can use these resources.
If you look at her eyes again try to find a "behavioural optometrist". They are the ones who will do the tests people are discussing. I do think though that there is never one answer but lots of little things. Dyslexia takes quite a while to diagnose and doesn't properly show until around 8 or so
I agree with other posters about going state and then putting your money into extra tutoring if needed. But also think about other activities that she can excel in you don't want every activity she does to be something she finds hard or overwhelming, and point out what she can't do.
That said I am quite at the beginning of a similar journey, they are just some things I have discovered so far.
The other thing to look at if she has had problems with glue ear and speech is auditory processing. You can get a special hearing test for that too.
I think you've had lots of good advice here, re. getting hearing, visual tracking tc looked into first.
I would strongly recomend getting a private Ed Psych to asses your DD. I had very similar experience with my DD and the report has allowed us to understand her difficulties much more. For instance we know that she has a poor working memory and very slow processing speed but has a very high 'general intelligence'. This then helped explain her bahaivoural issues as it's known as a frustration profile.
Sad to say DD's school refused to even read the report and we ended up moving her school, and it was the best thing we could have done. We also looked at private schools at this point and I would say the only school we would have been happy paying for was a specialist dyslexic school, but it was just a bit too far. The Catholic state school she is now at is unbelievably supportive. The first thing they implemented was to give her 5 mins confidence boosting intervention, every day which she still gets.
Other things that have helped us enormously is Toe by Toe reading scheme. Within a month of the scheme she was reading (now she is at the expected level!).
Also Dyslexia Support UK Facebook group is amazingly supportive, even if you find that your DD actually is not dyslexic, it's still very useful.
Best of luck, it can be a minefield!
Personally I'd avoid Toe by Toe in Y1 Bear Necessities is more child friendly
You may find that an Ed Psych won't assess until your DD is 7.
My DD was diagnosed last month - school had suspicions since halfway through Y2, but felt it would be too early to properly assess until beginning of Y3 as quite a few of the things that DD does/doesn't do are normal and expected in younger children but not so normal as they get older.
We were very fortunate that the school organised the ed psych report themselves - state primary in very deprived area.
Just on the eye thing, ask your DD to look at a page of text and tell you whether the words move or stay still. If she says things move or blur mention that to the behavioural optometrist and look into Irlen's Syndrome. It's not picked up on a normal eye test. I'd never heard of it, but my son has it and now wears quite darkly tinted glasses. They've made an enormous difference to him. Which if you think about it is blindingly obvious, as how on earth are they supposed to learn to read if the words keep moving?! DS hadn't said anything as to him it was just normal, so he assumed it happened to everyone.
Great advice. Thank you very much for taking the time to respond.
mrz: She can write the letters correctly if I say the sound and her hand writing is normally clear; she gets letter formation practice from school each week and does it correctly too; however I think she has problems transferring ideas into paper when she has to write a sentence.
Her reading is coming along; she can sound out all the words; merge small words, but get confused when merging longer words and normally merge the last part of the word only after sounding it all out. She is still in red band though and the teacher said she shoul be at least in yellow at this stage of year 1.
She is quite behind in maths; but I am trying to get on top of it. Only learnt to count to 20 recently. I did not do much when she was little as she used to had quite a few meltdowns and has only improved her behaviour in the last year or so.
I spoke to the behavioural optometrist; the test and report is nearly £300; but it is probably worth it. She sounded very competent and asked lots of questions.
What sort of specialist will do the test for glue ear?; when she had the hearing test they did not spot it; it was the Osteopath who suggested i; going back to her early years I do think she has suffered from it from time to time.
The Infant school she is in at the moment is very supportive; they said they will do the test in year 2 as it is still early days. Unfortunately this school only goes to year 2. Will stick to the stay sector though and get her the support needed privately if found to be dyslexic
I will look at the reading applications suggested.
Thanks again for all the advice
The book bands don't match the new curriculum so are a poor guide to expectations so I would ignore that.
Can I ask which scheme the school is using?
"What sort of specialist will do the test for glue ear?" ask your GP for a referral to an audiologist
"I spoke to the behavioural optometrist; the test and report is nearly £300; but it is probably worth it. She sounded very competent and asked lots of questions" most aren't save your money and ask GP for a referral
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