Can anyone help interpret a dyslexia screening?

(20 Posts)
ineedamoreadultieradult Fri 10-Nov-17 08:25:49

DS aged 10 in year 6 has never been great at reading and writing but apart from a brief mention in year two about considering dyslexia I'd things didn't improve his teachers have always said he is doing ok.

Don't was a big surprise after a few weeks in year 6 his teacher telling us 'he will not pass year 6 if he carries on like this' she then went on to say he was lazy and had a bad attitude to learning. This was the first time anything like this had been mentioned.

I had already noticed he quite often missed out words when reading or writing and I googled this and dyslexia was mentioned again.

Just to be sure one way or the other as his teacher was very dismissive about any learning difficulties and just thought he was lazy I paid £30 for him to do a dyslexia screening test with The Dyslexia Association.

The results are back and I need some help deciding if this is worth rising with the teacher.

The results say:

"He has a profile typical of someone with a few signs of dyslexia"

The results of the test are he has average ability to recognise patterns, identify sounds within words, to select letters and correctly spell words and parts of words and to recognise written words.

He has above average ability to understand the meaning of words.

Below average ability to deal with simple visual information.

I'm hesitant to raise it with the teacher as overall to be that sounds quite good as I have only a basic knowledge of Dyslexia and thought it was basically not being able to spell very well. I don't want it to look like I'm just coming up with excuses for him.

Any advice gratefully received.

OP’s posts: |
LIZS Fri 10-Nov-17 09:56:46

From that I'd suggest he may have a processing difficulty, however it would need a fuller assessment to define the type and extent to which it may affect his learning, as well as if there are any other issues. So perhaps not dyslexia per se.

BrendansDanceShoes Fri 10-Nov-17 13:43:14

You won't get additional support from school or understanding from the teacher unless you get the full assessment done - the going rate is about £500 (gulp). On what you have said, I am in agreement with LIZS as to that there may be processing difficulties. To this end, I found it useful to ensure that you talk with the teacher to try and eliminate as many unnecessary distractions as possible in class, even this is just moving your child nearer to the whiteboard/teacher/away from talkative children. My DS has mild dyslexia, highlighted in part by slower processing speed. We have worked with his teacher and him together and developed strategies to help him in class. However, this is with the understanding on his part that his behaviour and attitude to learning is key and in the long run will help him learn and make school more interesting. We have been lucky and he got that quite early on, so is now reaching his potential ready for SATS. We first considered dyslexia at the start of year 3, similar to when it was first mentioned for you. However, kids can develop very cunning coping strategies, especially if they have above average ability to understand the meaning of words. I suspect in your case, school have just done a first half term of assessments for SATS and they are worried - but equally, that's not all your son's fault. Any good school should have been monitoring potential to succeed at the end of Year 6 from the start of KS2, at least, so that interventions could have been put into place as soon as possible.

TheDuchessOfKidderminster Fri 10-Nov-17 13:51:02

Can you post a screenshot of the results? Dyslexia isn’t a ‘visual’ problem anyway so I’m not sure why the screening is looking at that. The other stuff sounds alright but from what you’ve said I think there is definitely something going on (possibly dyslexia, possibly something else). The screening doesn’t sound all that helpful in getting to the bottom of it though sad

Todayissunny Fri 10-Nov-17 13:57:22

Sounds like my son. His diagnosis is dyslexia. We went to an optometrist who tracked his eye movements while he was reading and did othe tests. His problem is related to his eyes ( bur not his sight). The eyes don't work togetherso when he reads his eyes move in different directions, he sees double at normal reading distance, eyes unsteady and moving round so he had to constantly search for where he was reading . Because of this He has been unable to store or process visual images of patterns (ie words). Hence reading was a huge effort. We did an intensive eye training program with him (exercises everyday)and his reading improved really quickly. He is still really struggling with writing because he has missed the stage where kids start storing visual images, but he is improving. He is also doing another therapy to help with his visualisation. We have been through loads of tests with him and found out he has an exceptional understanding of language and words (and he is bilingual so tha even in his second languagel) but spells like a child 5 years younger.

Todayissunny Fri 10-Nov-17 14:03:17

Duchess - it is not known what causes dyslexia. It is defined as a reading writing ability below what is expected for the intellect of the person. Issues with vision and eyes are not that simple and can't be separated out from processing or neurology.

TheDuchessOfKidderminster Fri 10-Nov-17 14:22:18

It is pretty much universally understood that dyslexia is a language based disorder caused by problems with phonological processing. If you want to find out more look at the work of Margaret Snowling and colleagues who have thoroughly researched this over the past 30 or so years.!po=8.33333


Lonecatwithkitten Fri 10-Nov-17 14:48:00

Sounds like a visual processing disorder, my 1970s diagnosis of dyslexia I now know is a visual processing disorder. My DD has s visual processing disorder. Behavioural optometry has been hugely useful for DD and identifying that she has superior auditory processing and so she learns much better by listening to things than reading them.
Her reading speed is fine, but it takes her longer for her brain to process and be able to answer questions on what she has read.

Norestformrz Fri 10-Nov-17 18:27:55

“^*Duchess - it is not known what causes dyslexia*^. “

There isn’t a universally accepted definition of dyslexia. Here are some ...

“Dyslexia is a learning difficulty that primarily affects the skills involved in accurate and fluent word reading and spelling.

Characteristic features of dyslexia are difficulties in phonological awareness, verbal memory and verbal processing speed.
Dyslexia occurs across the range of intellectual abilities.
It is best thought of as a continuum, not a distinct category, and there are no clear cut-off points.
Co-occurring difficulties may be seen in aspects of language, motor co-ordination, mental calculation, concentration and personal organisation, but these are not, by themselves, markers of dyslexia.”

“Dyslexia is a specific learning difficulty that mainly affects the development of literacy and language related skills. It is likely to be present at birth and to be life-long in its effects. It is characterised by difficulties with phonological processing, rapid naming, working memory, processing speed, and the automatic development of skills that may not match up to an individual's other cognitive abilities.”


“Dyslexia is a specific learning disability that is neurobiological in origin. It is characterized by difficulties with accurate and/or fluent word recognition and by poor spelling and decoding abilities. These difficulties typically result from a deficit in the phonological component of language that is often unexpected in relation to other cognitive abilities and the provision of effective classroom instruction. Secondary consequences may include problems in reading comprehension and reduced reading experience that can impede growth of vocabulary and background knowledge.”

But it is accepted that dyslexia isn’t a visual problem although visual problems can of course result in reading difficulties.

underneaththeash Fri 10-Nov-17 18:30:47

I also think that it could be a visual processing problem.
Although just to check that you have had a eye exam already as your DS may just need some glasses.

This check list is pretty good, although I don't agree with everything written in it.

ineedamoreadultieradult Fri 10-Nov-17 18:43:54

Thanks for the replies. DS has already had his eyes tested for sight problems and wears glasses for slight long sightedness. I'm not sure about visual processing as a lot of the things mentioned when I looked into this don't seem to fit. He has very good spacial awareness etc, is in the county cricket team etc so I'm not sure if that really fits.

OP’s posts: |
TheDuchessOfKidderminster Fri 10-Nov-17 18:51:59

ALL of those definitions see dyslexia as a language based disorder that is primarily the result of a deficit in phonological processing. The IDA definition (the last one you quoted) is probably the best known and has been knocking around now for more than 10 years so and is pretty much universally accepted among dyslexia experts internationally. There are plenty of things that can be argued about re dyslexia diagnosis but the phonological basis of this condition isn’t really one of them.

OP if you want help interpreting the screening feel free to PM me, sorry the thread seems to have got a bit derailed into definitions of dyslexia. I’ll not disclose why but I’m VERY familiar with dyslexia screening tests and their interpretation so I should be able to help.

TheDuchessOfKidderminster Fri 10-Nov-17 18:54:18

Do you know what the visual test involved doing? It’s difficult to say anything constructive without knowing a bit more about it.

shivermytimbers Fri 10-Nov-17 18:59:38

Re: defining dyslexia...
I'll just leave this here

Todayissunny Fri 10-Nov-17 19:04:15

My ds had his eyes tested and they were fine. The problem is that hiss eyes dont work together. The optometrist recognised this but cannot say if it is a problem specifically with eye mechanics or neurogical. He has other sypmptons that often appear with dyslexia (poor working memory for example). We just saw that the eye training improved his reading.

chickensarethebest Fri 10-Nov-17 19:09:24

Did they test for visual stress? Has anyone looked at how he reacts to overlays?

IME, the optician does not pick up the need for behavioural optometry and it can, and does, make a difference for certain people.

SkeletonSkins Fri 10-Nov-17 20:24:20

I run a Dyslexia screener at work. I'd suggest that the screener is picking up that your son has difficulties but it doesn't entirely fit the usual pattern of Dyslexia. That said, even with a diagnosis, the support offered to your child probably wouldn't be wildly different. I'd recommend the Beat Dyslexia programme, or Dancing Bears/Apples and Pears, done at home.

Lonecatwithkitten Sat 11-Nov-17 08:41:25

A regular sight testing will not pick up a visual processing disorder it requires specialist assessment by behavioural optometry looking at tracking and if the eyes work together. DD had 20:20 vision, but visual processing was about as bad as it could get.

LtGreggs Sat 11-Nov-17 08:47:30

Re the £500 assessment - having this done may be very useful (it was for us), but it doesn't automatically mean school will accept exactly what the report says and leap in to action. Which I understand to an extent. But it can be a good tool for understanding what's going on for yourselves, and would help you advocate for appropriate attention at school.

Norestformrz Sat 11-Nov-17 08:55:11

I think before spending £500 on a full test you need to consider what you expect to gain from it.

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