We’d like our DD to have extra time for her 11+ and SATs to give her the best opportunity to reach her potential but don’t know to go about applying for this. It would be unfair if any application is dependent on the recommendation of her head teacher.
Adjustments for 11+ in Bucks and SATS use completely different criteria.
11+ comes first. The critical evidence they will be looking for is a Standardised Score below 85, ie 16th centile or below. The form they fill in asks for these scores for:
Make sure that you look at all your DD's scores and discuss with the Senco whether any are at that level. Many dyslexics have weak Working Memory scores so look at those too and if appropriate fill them in under other.
In 2014, 143 people applied for adjustments and they were awarded in 121 cases, ie 85%.
In 2015, 160 people applied for adjustments and they were awarded in 118 cases, ie 74%.
I have the numbers of exactly what adjustments were given in 2015. I can scan these in and send them - Etienne, do you want to inbox me to tell me how to do this? There are 22 different categories. Here are the main adjustment numbers:
Breaks - 41
25% extra all sections - 40
10% extra all sections - 27
Prompter - 23
Test alone - 107
If you inbox me I'm happy to answer specific questions.
Regarding SATS, there was a form that was distributed to heads early this year indicating what tests should be administered. They do not include the processing speed tests used by specialist teachers and ed psychs. If your child does not meet these criteria, you and the head cannot use your ed psych evidence to ask for adjustments. However, the head can explain your child's case and it is possible that some arrangement can be made, not including extra time. In our case, DD has the low processing speed scores that would trigger extra time for 11+, GCSEs, A levels etc, but aren't used for KS2 SATs. Because she has a very good reading age she couldn't be given extra time. However, after a lot of toing and froing she was given rest breaks with the blessing of the central authorities responsible.
This discrepancy between the two ways used to assess for adjustments is certainly inconsistent, and is arguably discriminatory.
Another point: if an ed psych has said this adjustment is needed for your child it seems sensible that it should be made "the normal way of working" for her, and both the SATs and 11+ panels will ask about this. Schools might not be all that co-operative: giving extra time requires quite a bit of administration and has staffing implications. Moreover, we had the experience of my daughter being given extra time for school mock SATs, only to have her application rejected and the extra time taken away. Now she is at secondary school where no-one is given extra time until Year 9. In retrospect, I wouldn't bother. It was confusing for my daughter and the school made a series of mistakes which I had to challenge, which became uncomfortable for me and for my daughter too.
Finally, all of this talk of "moderate" and "severe" dyslexia is very misleading. The professionals who have tested my children have avoided using the terms. Because they are bright and compensate in creative ways they work out for themselves, they mask their disability. Because they do well enough and don't cause trouble, it can be described as "mild", and in many cases bright dyslexics don't hit problems until later in their school careers or even at university. Please look up the wikipedia entry on "Twice Exceptional". I found it very helpful in understanding how to support my lovely, baffling kids. In summary: don't forget to develop their strengths while your support their weaknesses.