A battle and a half.

My son is seventeen years old, a long story about dyslexia, oral and physical dyspraxia and auditory processing disorder. After seven years plus at dyslexia action he never finished the course level two. Well now he is doing his a levels in chemistry, biology, geography and psychology. He has a health, social care and education. His statement was a band two. He is supported with a reader and writer at college full time.

It has been a battle.

What has helped

Tutors.

Being a warrier.

Always having enough evidence for the local authority and threatening mediation and taking them to a tribunal. It costs the local authority thirty five thousand pounds to go through this.

sport for self confidence. My son is in team gb development team.

Kids, used to help, but they not do not believe in taking risks. Very much in with local authorities. Thankfully we had a maverick advocate from kids.

I have gained five stones and probably am his carer.

No one really gets it.

4 Replies

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  • Whew! You're right, no one really gets it! Well done to both of you. Having children with special needs of any sort is a full time job and massive responsibility. I gave up teaching ( I am a special needs dyslexia specialist) to home educate my son through his exam years, but I wish I'd done it earlier! It was a great success. So we didn't need to employ tutors, which is good because it is hard to find good ones - those with experience who can actually see and unleash potential.

    I can honestly say that my husband and I have spent every minute of our son's life helping him develop his self esteem. We did it mainly through supporting his love of music and teaching him to read as early as possible. (Ebooks are fantastic -start them listening to good age specific books as early as possible. Don't bother with the reading - it's the listening that is important. They will develop a deep love of literature, and that will help them when they start to learn to read and write, and with all their school work) But I digress...

    Two major problems we had at school were badly trained teachers and bullying, and we had to fight against these all through his school life. Our son was different - and schools don't do different. In the end we opted for home education and luckily that worked!

    What have I gained:

    A wonderful and very brave 16 year old son - (who still has a lot to do). Since starting Home Ed he has grown in every way, but he hasn't forgotten how unhappy he was at school and he is like a soap bubble - his self-esteem and confidence easily pop - and then we start the process of very carefully blowing it up again. He now has lots of friends who love him to bits, but that wasn't always the case. I don't have many friends - people didn't agree with our decision to take him out of school.

    What I have learned:

    That I was right to ignore all the people who told me that it would be: alright in the end, not to worry, chill out, leave him be, trust the school, stop mothering him, he has to learn to defend himself, it's just a bit of banter etc! They were wrong.

    Too many children with special needs are let down by professional adults in their lives - they need parents who fight, fight and keep on fighting for the right kind of support such as in class accommodations for example.

    It's vital to form a solid, open and honest relationship with the SENCO.

    Learn your rights and the law. You have legal rights. I haven't had much to do with the local authority, but that'll be a fight. Keep in with them.

    Make sure you get the right support during exam years. Mine got extra time for his exams and could have had a scribe, but decided to type. It all helps.

    It is very important that parents speak up and don't take no for an answer. Always believe that your child is telling you the truth and be there for him/her (the law is on your side). Unless you are very lucky and find a brilliant teacher like I was and my husband still is - you are their only chance - isn't that sad.

    I'm sure I've missed out many things, and that people will add to this very interesting thread.

    Hope this is useful to someone out there.

  • This sounds like my upbringing through school regarding education and growing in a adult! Educating years was hell for me as starting a special needs school which basically a no go further education for they thought I wasn't clever or mental capacity of understanding due I was deaf with bad walking blance as them years they've classed me deaf and dumb!. Yeah my schools day was hell and back with school pupils who were teasing me horrible or they don't understand me as well me too didn't understand them. As my school started as in boarding schools then joined public state school around 10years old as this made my life turn over in my comfortable zone as it was hard to me adjust from boarding school to state. But hey it's got easier into late youth.

    As its was my step dad first spotted my intelligence by showing me a world globe and pin point a creature of whereabout on the world then over the period of time pasted the he encouraged me to pinpoint a creature on world, then they realise that I can do/educated so they pushed and pushed for to send me to better school which was called dawn house school near Mansfield. They had to overcome the social services red tape as really mean pushed them into the corner to help me. Which I thank you them for getting me of where I am nowadays. Tell you something that the world is still cruel out whatever school or work environment, meaning get misjudgment of what disability you got or not but it's make the victim/suffering individual stronger then those applies negative actions/verbally to victim.

    So my advice don't give in until you tried/worked and fight for your best interests at as instead saying "I can't do it!" So please anyone whose read this comment, do reply to me if I had misinterpreted or not explained myself

  • Hi Scoobiematt -well said. So sorry to hear your story - you've had such a tough time - your intelligence and courage shines through in what you have written. It's good to meet such a strong fighter!

  • well i am fighter when pushed into the corner and believe its right to for right reasons and which is fair for me and others. as i know that i can do more for the right reasons(possible go back to being a student for new education) for those who willing but not for other to benefit who can't be bother/lazy :-)!

    as well i have been through a tough time a few years and trust of person(relationship of 13 years as sort of lied for 2years eg lost love) knocked me off my comfortable but hey getting there so i am looking for a challenge for raising money for dyslexia basically riding around Scotland 500 next year so any suggestions

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