Dyslexia in grammar schoolc(5 Posts)
my DD learned to read easily at the normal age and enjoys writing- but at the age of 11 spells nearly every word incorrectly- I am talking about words like 'this' 'mouse 'water'. I nattered her primary school about it a lot , they gave her some extra phonics support for a few weeks ,but otherwise weren't interested.She got level 5A in everything in her SATS, but reads quite slowly and soon seems to get fatigued.
She has been at grammar school for 2 weeks and they suspect she may be dyslexic and are organising tests for her.
I have just looked at the website and they only have 0.3% of teh children with a SEN.Although it is great if she will finally get some help, I just wonder with so few children with SEN what the provision will be like.
Anyone got any experience/advice
My DS was/is severely dyspraxic and got absolutely no help from SEN in seven years at super-selective. Individual teachers were kind and understanding but no-one did anything. He got 25% extra time in exams but the school just wasn't geared up to help his sort. In retrospect I wish I'd made more demands but I didn't/don't actually know what sort of help he needed ... Good luck with yours.
My DDs are dyslexic, or perhaps I should say have SLDs (Specific Learning Differences). They were originally diagnosed dyslexic but the definitions have changed and unless DCs have problems with reading and spelling then other problems on the spectrum such as memory and processing skills are now defined as being SLDs. One DD had early and very effective intervention so that her spelling and reading are now up to average level, and the other has a photographic memory so didn't have problems with learning reading and spelling via look/see, but then problems manifested themselves later. They are / were at a very selective indie. Firstly is the 0.3% the percentage of DCs diagnosed or the children with statements? At DDs school they find that around 10% end up diagnosed with SLDs, that correlates with the incidence of SLDs in the population and since it has that incidence at all levels of intelligence / ability that makes sense. 0.3% might be nearer the incidence of DCs with statements, ie identified by the LA as needing extra support so that money and resources follow the child?
Support at DDs school was patchy, really confined to one slightly mad specialist teacher with whom they had lessons to help them develop strategies to cope with their different learning styles, and implementing the process to get them the extra time in exams. Neither was impressed One DD had already worked them out for herself other DD has problems organising herself
I fear she will be found one day in a house filled with papers with little tunnels running between her bed and the fridge so the last thing she needed was t be given more sheets of paper to help her cope with all her sheets of paper..... However other schools in the area have brilliant facilities with drop in centres where DCs can go to get the resources they need when they encounter a problem. I think generally support in schools is patchy. I would also say that spelling is not high on secondary schools list of priorities, even in a superselective, they only get a maximum of 6% knocked off GCSE marks for spelling (and that might be include grammar )so certainly with DDs it was just assumed those marks were a lost cause!! However Gove is about to change all that so maybe they will have more incentive.
Overall I would say that you should go in and ask exactly what support your DD will get and then I would seriously think about lining up some tutoring yourself. DD had early intervention at primary school because it was clear she was never going to learn to read with flashcards and look and see. She saw a specialist teacher who took her back to phonic basics, learning to build up words from scratch. It is a long, laborious process and will be pretty boring for an 11 year old and TBH speaking as a dyslexic who had a very formal education, spending half my life writing out wrong spellings 6 times at school, it may never really pay off. Thank God for spellcheck It hasn't really been that much of a problem in terms of career and academic results.
I teach in a grammar school & dyslexia is the most common SEN our students have. The students get good support from a specialist teacher and in our last Ofsted they commented that the SEN students' achievement is as good as everyone else's (in some cases I suspect, better, as they have to work out strategies to achieve things others find easy). I don't know if that's typical, but it's certainly not uncommon to have high ability & dyslexia together. Mind you we often pick it up in sixth formers who have come from other schools and struggled for years.
I'm sure it will vary from school to school but whilst there may be some argument that a non-selective will have more resources/budget/expertise with SEN it can also be true, as phiney says that there is excellent support in a grammar, especially for dyslexia, simply because there are fewer dcs with SEN so they can target what support they do have more clearly.
Even without a specific diagnosis of dyslexia, many dcs are receiving good targeted support with literacy in our grammar school which, were they in a comp, I suspect they would not; purely because they wouldn't necessarily be that weak in comparison to the average, iyswim.
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