Letter to School About Dyslexia Testing
Neurological in origin, dyslexia is an inherited condition that, regardless of a person’s intelligence, makes it difficult for them to write, read and spell accurately in their native language. Dyslexia can also affect handwriting and arithmetic. People with dyslexia have slightly different brains from those without; they have a larger right-hemisphere. This could be why some people with dyslexia have particular strengths in areas controlled by the right side of the brain, such as athletic, creative, musical, mechanical and people skills.
Importantly, there is no single test for dyslexia, as dyslexia varies and can be mild, moderate or severe. A professional testing for dyslexia will usually use around ten or twelve different tests. Dyslexia testing isn’t compulsory but it is recommended. Until parents and teachers know why a child is struggling in certain areas, they will be unable to identify the best ways to teach and help that child. In the UK, pupils with dyslexia often have useful, additional resources available to them, designed to make learning more accessible for them. Some dyslexic pupils may have a free computer available to them, for example. Dyslexic pupils are often also eligible for special consideration or extra time in exams. In order to make use of such benefits, a diagnosis is necessary.
If you suspect that your child may be dyslexic, be sure to contact their school to request a test. Below is an example of a letter that could be sent to a teacher about a child’s suspected dyslexia.
Example LetterThe School House
England 5 February 2008 Dear Mrs FletcherI am writing to you because I suspect that my daughter, Bethan, may be dyslexic.
As you know, Bethan has difficulty when it comes to reading, writing and spelling and has progressed relatively slowly in these areas. She also has particular difficulty with her handwriting and struggles to write neatly and in a uniform manner. I have been reading about the signs of dyslexia recently and believe that Bethan displays most of them. Have you ever suspected that Bethan might be dyslexic or noticed any signs?
My main purpose in writing to you is to request that Bethan be tested for dyslexia. I would be very grateful if you could arrange this as soon as possible, so that Bethan’s specific needs can be identified and met. I am sure that you will support me in this decision. What steps do the school usually take in these situations, what can I expect and what sort of time scale are we looking at?
I understand that private testing is available but this is prohibitively expensive for us as a family. I also believe that it is important for Bethan to be tested through school, since it is her principal place of learning.
I look forward to hearing from you about this. You can contact me, Trudy, on 0131 2343 9049 or 0723422342, or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, or via the address above.
With thanks for your time and best wishes
Trudy Strange, mother of Bethan Strange