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PostPosted: Sat Sep 07, 2013 3:38 pm 
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I don't even know where to begin and I don't even know if I've come to the right place!

My son is due to sit the Bexley tests. I have been voicing my concerns about his literacy difficulties to the school since Year 1. We had him assessed for dyslexia in Year 3 and unfortunately he was too young for a full diagnosis. He struggled on all through Year 4 and eventually at the beginning of Year 5 we paid again for an independent assessment by a well known and highly regarded Educational Pyschologist who finally diagnosed him with Dyslexia. She believes that mistakes were made in the original report.

Since Year 4 we have been removing our son at our insistence, with the Head's permission, to have him tutored on a one to one basis for his literacy (which we have had to pay for). His self-esteem was so low he was constantly crying and refusing to go to school. He has come on leaps and bounds and has scored average to above in his SATs. His IQ is 118 and his reading age is 12 years 4 months but his reading speed is on the lowest centile. He has a spelling age of 9 years and struggles with times tables etc as he cannot process the information as quickly as others. The Ed Psych explained that as we had helped him the school had taken the credit and he had slipped through the loop at school.

I had to push the Head to apply to Bexley for extra time as he said he was doing OK. OK for whom? His IQ is clearly stating that has potential and yet I cannot get any help for him. Since he has been diagnosed, despite assurances from the school that they would help, he has not even been seen by the Senco.

The report quite clearly states that he needs to receive extra time for all tests. I have constantly been in the school requesting him to have extra time and he has never ever been given any. On Thursday he came home from school so distressed at having sat a practice test and only managing 65 questions instead of the 85 that he was physically sick.

On Friday the Head called me to say that he had been refused extra time as the Education Authority felt that his dyslexia did not impact his reading and writing significantly. I am absolutely spitting. He has worked so hard for nothing. He still isn't having his disability recognised. Today I have learned that a girl who goes to a private school in Bexley and who does not have a statement has been granted an extra 25 minutes and is able to sit the exam a week later than her peers!!!!

Arrgghhhhhhh. Anyone have any advice or ideas? Many thanks in advance.


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 07, 2013 10:19 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jul 21, 2009 9:56 pm
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If he does not pass you can appeal. Where does an iq of 118 place him centile wise? What do you mean by lowest centile for reading speed - do you mean 99 per cent of children his age read faster? Or did you mean lowest quartile? If so, what centile?


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2013 4:10 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jul 27, 2008 3:02 pm
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Location: S E London
Hi. I have no advice I'm afraid but last year we too were denied extra time by Bexley despite the ed psych report stating that she needed it. One problem we seem to come up against is that her IQ is above average, but her processing speed is just about within the average range. I would have thought that her speed should match her IQ, but there we go. She also couldn't do many of the VR tests cos so many of them depended on spelling - she can't see if a word is correct or not. In the end we chose to withdraw her - we decided that the faster speed at grammar plus the requirement to do 2 languages (she has a mild expressive language disorder as part of the dyslexia, which impacts her ability to properly store and retrieve new words) meant that maybe a grammar would not be the best place for her. She went on to get a level 6 in maths, 5 in reading (her teacher has asked for a remark cos she only just missed a level 6) and even a 5 in SPAG, and started at a local comp last week. Even now I look at her and think how unfair it all is.

Sorry to high jack your thread, but it bought back the injustice we felt last year when we were in the same situation.


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 11, 2013 7:40 pm 
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OMG OMG OMG :D :D :D I can't believe I challenged the Council and they have reversed their decision!!!! Originally they stated that my son's report shows weakness in reading, comprehension and spelling. The Bexley selection tests consist of multiple choice questions with no complex reading comprehension required.

I wrote a stinking email and gave them 24 hours to deal with the situation and suggested that they hadn't read his report properly especially as they didn't even get his name right!!! Today I received an email informing me that they had reconsidered his report and they felt it was in his best interests to allow the extra 25% of time AND he can sit the test on his own.

I am soooo pleased. It is not about him being deemed selective or non-selective as I have no doubt that he would struggle too much in a grammar school. It is the principle of the matter and that they were not recognising his needs. He simply cannot read as fast as everyone else. His IQ places him on about the 75th centile and his reading is on the slowest quartile (sorry my mistake before).

I too felt I had no option but to withdraw him from the tests but unfortunately my son sees that as failure....rock and a hard place. What will be will be but whatever happens he knows that we fully support and recognise his needs! :D :D :D :D :D :D


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 12, 2013 10:02 am 
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Joined: Sun Jul 27, 2008 3:02 pm
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Location: S E London
I'm so pleased this has happened for you! Well done for taking on the council. All the best for next week!


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 12, 2013 10:25 am 
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Joined: Mon Jul 04, 2011 1:47 pm
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Location: Warwickshire
Well done, worrywizard. In Warks, I believe dc with sen have their own cd's which have extra time added in, and they sit in small groups, or on their own with a reader if necessary.

Well done! It was worth it.


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 13, 2013 9:25 am 
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Joined: Tue Jul 21, 2009 9:56 pm
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worrywizard wrote:
OMG OMG OMG :D :D :D I can't believe I challenged the Council and they have reversed their decision!!!! Originally they stated that my son's report shows weakness in reading, comprehension and spelling. The Bexley selection tests consist of multiple choice questions with no complex reading comprehension required.

I wrote a stinking email and gave them 24 hours to deal with the situation and suggested that they hadn't read his report properly especially as they didn't even get his name right!!! Today I received an email informing me that they had reconsidered his report and they felt it was in his best interests to allow the extra 25% of time AND he can sit the test on his own.

I am soooo pleased. It is not about him being deemed selective or non-selective as I have no doubt that he would struggle too much in a grammar school. It is the principle of the matter and that they were not recognising his needs. He simply cannot read as fast as everyone else. His IQ places him on about the 75th centile and his reading is on the slowest quartile (sorry my mistake before).

I too felt I had no option but to withdraw him from the tests but unfortunately my son sees that as failure....rock and a hard place. What will be will be but whatever happens he knows that we fully support and recognise his needs! :D :D :D :D :D :D


Good. I think I would also have added that if the new test this year from C E M does not require children to read pretty rapidly and comprehend fast, what exactly is it that they have commissioned? It makes the mind boggle. Or maybe you did get someone else's decision letter! I am glad you got it sorted at such short notice. Perhaps now the headteacher will be shamed into making sure the SENCO sees your son and puts some good support in place for the rest of year 6 e.g. a decent application for whatever he needs for the KS2 SATS.

Who did you write to at Bexley?

Good luck for the real test.


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