The Hon. Kate Jones Education Minister Dear Kate I am writing this letter in tears and anger.  My child came out of his classroom in te...

Amanda's Red Letter

19:10:00 My Red Letter Dyslexia Awareness 0 Comments

The Hon. Kate Jones
Education Minister

Dear Kate

I am writing this letter in tears and anger.  My child came out of his classroom in tears this morning because he could not understand his fractions.   During a recent meeting while Ethan was present, we were told that his marks are at D standard.  I am concerned about his well-being.

I knew my son had Dyslexia at the age of 2 years old.  I also knew he had sensory issues and was an anxious child.  I didn’t need anyone to diagnose this for me.  My son has had extensive therapy by speech therapists, occupational therapists and other programs to help him.  This was all paid by me.
I had to give up work to help him control his anxieties.  We are still on a single wage and we cannot pay for all therapies.  

My frustration did not stop there.  All this therapy helped but not enough for my son to suffer at school and receive limited help for his weaknesses.   We have been to three schools and they are all the same.  The schools don’t want to know you; they ignored my emails and phone calls hoping that I will go away.  My son gets limited assistance in class; his teacher is expected to help him and several other children.

I have felt bullied by the schools.   My anxiety levels just keep on getting worse.  I feel overwhelmed and helpless.  I watched my son memorise his readers but not being able to decode the words.   The teachers and learning support would not believe me or would not help me.

His refusal to go to school became extreme and I basically had to drag him there.  I was exhausted from all the tantrums and sadness.  By the time Ethan was in grade 3 (a new school) I took it upon myself to enroll him into a structured evidenced based program that I had to take him out of school for and it was expensive.  We worked on the program for two years.  The program was only meant to go for a year.  After hours of hard work every week and dealing with tantrums and a lot of homework his processing speed improved and his knew his alphabet back to front but his decoding skills were still low.

I now have a MSL tutor come to school once a week to help him decode words paid by myself.  I don’t know if this will help but it is my only hope.  My son is 10 years old.  His comprehension levels are above his age group but his decoding skills are of a 7 year old.  

I also have a daughter in grade 1 going through the same thing and all I can hope for is a better, more educated approach towards Dyslexia instead of ignoring children who are screaming for help.  I dread interviews with teachers, principals, learning support teachers and I also dread the thought of high schools.

I don’t understand the Education System.  Why are some children receiving enormous amount of help and others like my son are being ignored?  Why doesn’t the education system listen to the people?  The Government has a choice.  Spend the money on our children to give them a chance in life or spend more money on Mental Health for our children because of the anxiety and depression that comes from struggling through 13 years of schooling.

Yours sincerely 
Amanda

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