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Come and advise me on asking for assessments for dyslexia please.

(15 Posts)
teamcullen Tue 15-Sep-09 17:20:01

Im going to ask DSs school to test for dyslexia. How should I ask?

He is in year six and was at level 2a for literacy in July. We asked his teacher then if he could be tested and she said she would find out. She has now left the school and nothing has been said to me.

I asked his new teacher if I could come in and see her regarding his literacy the first week we went back. She said give her a few weeks to assess DS for herself and then come in.

So i am going to go in in the next few days. How best should I ask? and what questions would you bring up.

cornsillk Tue 15-Sep-09 17:21:58

Ask the SENCO. How are they going to assess him? Have they a specialist teacher on staff. A non-specialist may not spot dyslexia.

aprilflowers Tue 15-Sep-09 19:35:36

Agree with cornsilk - only a certified educational psychologist with experience in dyslexia or a trained teacher with a post graduate qualification should assess.

They will be able to give you a very through assessment highlighting your child's strengths and weaknesses.

They use standardised tests [ some only the ed psy can administer] so they cannot diagnosis every one as dyslexic - only those that fall within a strict criteria.

Other teachers can administer dyslexia screening tests which are very broad and not the same thing at all.

One of the key indicators of dyslexia is the difference between verbal reasoning and reading and writing levels. If there is a discrepancy that is a strong indication of dyslexia.

You probably need to really push the school as the ed psychologist time is limited and often has to be bought in unless the school is luck enough to have a qualified a teacher.

If you can afford it [ over £300 ] it is work having a private assessment and the school is duty bound to meet the child's diagnosed needs [ although again you may have to fight] and can not ignore it under the special needs code of practice

teamcullen Tue 15-Sep-09 19:36:08

Cornsilk- He has had an IEP for a good few years and has had lots of help with reading and literacy, but nobody in the school has ever mentioned him being dyslexic. His sister was very bright and he has always been confident in expressing ideas to his classmates. I think they thorght things would just click and he would catch up in his own time.

I really dont know how they would assess him, how much imput the SENCO has had with him or what her specialities are.

He can not spell simple words and doesnt know basic spelling rules.

His reading has come on loads the past 12 months but he has no confidence and refuses to read more than a few paragraphs.

He still cant sequence the months of the year or remember which month things occur (christmas is in December, for example)

He often doesnt know what day it is

He has trouble learning times tables

His new teacher taught DD and is a very good teacher and head of literacy. When I spoke to her in the first week, she said she had picked up on his trouble spelling already but asked me to give her a couple of weeks so she had a better idea about him. I was planning on speaking to her first.

aprilflowers Tue 15-Sep-09 19:39:14

Teamcullen - 2a is certainly cause for concern going into year 6 .
Whether your daughter has dyslexia or not the school should be putting an individualised reading programme into place.
Look on the dyslexia institute and british dyslexia association website which will give you indicators of dyslexia
Good luck

teamcullen Tue 15-Sep-09 19:39:57

Does everybody have to fight to get a diagnosis? People seem to say that a lot sad

teamcullen Tue 15-Sep-09 19:47:32

Aprilflowers DD hasnt got dyslexia. She is very bright and has always been above average.

What I meant was, because his older sister was bright, maybe they thorght things would fall into place for him.

His 2a level has stayed the same for the past 12 months. before that he was progressing slowly but surely. Last year he had a newly qualified teacher and I think she was out of her depth with DS.

aprilflowers Tue 15-Sep-09 19:53:46

Sorry confused - meant your son. I think we cross posted. Your post appeared as I was typing mine.
Dyslexia has nothing to do with intelligence. Many of the greatest thinkers and scientists are/were dyslexic.
Your son may be very bright but struggling with everything you outlined in your post.
They are all classic indicators of dyslexia

cornsillk Tue 15-Sep-09 20:05:16

Teamcullen - indicators of dyslexia at primary age from BDA website.

* Has particular difficulty with reading and spelling.
* Puts letters and figures the wrong way round.
* Has difficulty remembering tables, alphabet, formulae etc.
* Leaves letters out of words or puts them in the wrong order.
* Still occasionally confuses 'b' and 'd' and words such as 'no/on'.
* Still needs to use fingers or marks on paper to make simple calculations.
* Poor concentration.
* Has problems understanding what he/she has read.
* Takes longer than average to do written work.
* Problems processing language at speed.

Primary school age non-language indicators:

* Has difficulty with tying shoe laces, tie, dressing.
* Has difficulty telling left from right, order of days of the week, months of the year etc.
* Surprises you because in other ways he/she is bright and alert.
* Has a poor sense of direction and still confuses left and right.
* Lacks confidence and has a poor self image

teamcullen Tue 15-Sep-09 21:32:59

What Im thinking is, it is often said that you will need to fight or push for the school to say yes to the assessment. I would rather that DS had the assessment done now to take with him to secondary school. So when people say you may have to fight for the assessment, what are the right things to say when starting this process and what kind of thing do I want to hear back. Or what might they say to try and fob me off.

aprilflowers Tue 15-Sep-09 22:14:12

I would simply go in and state you are now formally requesting an assessment for dyslexic and ask for a time scale for referral.
I would outline all the reasons why you consider dyslexia to be a possibility.
I would also state that Government Guidance is that best practice for pupils with dyslexia is early and specific intervention.
Follow up the conversation putting this all in writing and ask to be kept up to date with the referral process.
Ask after two weeks what is happening.
Good luck

teamcullen Tue 15-Sep-09 22:46:38

Thanks aprilshowers, I hope the school dont make things difficult. HT is my boss, but not in the school, (day nursery attached to school) so I dont want to get into a fight over DSs education.

Hopefully Im worrying over nothing and the teacher agrees with me.

Sandy22 Sun 20-Sep-09 16:16:50

Teamcullen: My ds is in Year 3 and last year in the sats he didn't manage a 1, mainly becuase he still can't read or use his pencil properly and finds it hard to record anything. I have to say I fought the school all the way from Year 1 when first noticed something. I managed to get him tested by an EP last year and they used the term SPlD's - basically because they won't use the term dyslexia until a child reaches 7 - don't ask me why. I went into school last week to discuss his IEP and finally she used the term dsylexia when talking about my ds. I would defo go into the school and request an dsylexia assessment smile

yesitsme Wed 23-Sep-09 14:10:36

We went down the route of getting our son assessed privately with Dyslexia Action then once we had the report and knew all the facts we then approached school who were great and are now supporting our son as best they can and have taken the steps to have him formally assessed for statementing.

LynetteScavo Thu 24-Sep-09 20:47:48

Wow, I was about to start a very similar thread!

I spoke to DS2's teacher today, and she said whe would look into what has to be done to achieve a diagnosis (she has only just taken on the role of SENCO). She also said I should go to see our GP. Is thiat right? Would it do any good? Who would he refere DS to?

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