Schools & Organisations

Dyslexia – Schools, Education Centres, Tutors


It is difficult to advise on the type of school you should be looking for, as every child’s education needs are so different. For the majority of children, they will go to the school in their immediate vicinity. But specialist schooling for students’ with dyslexia is slightly different because there is not usually a lot of choices.

It is essential that the right school is identified for your child. Sometimes, although a school is very close to your home, it may not always be the best one for your child’s individual needs. Visit all the schools in your area and see what specialist provision they can offer.


Schools for Dyslexia and other Specific Learning Difficulties (SpLD's)

There are many different types of schools, including:

* Mainstream schools (your local school)
* The Independent Sector.
* Schools specialising in Dyslexia.
* Schools for Deaf Children.
* Schools for Blind Children.


State Schools – Mainstream

The majority of schools in the UK are operated by the government/LEAs. Most of these are ordinary mainstream schools.

Even if children have special needs, i.e., dyslexia, dyspraxia etc., the child usually stays in mainstream schooling. This is considered best for the child and the family. It is only in extreme cases (if the school cannot meet the needs of the individual child) that they would go to a specialist school. Some mainstream schools have units attached to them for dyslexia etc., or therapists and other specialists can come to the school on a regular basis.

In the UK, a booklet is available from your Local Education Authority (LEA) with a list of all schools in your area. 


Schools  that Specialise in Dyslexia

The majority of schools in the UK, which specialise in dyslexia, are private. (At the moment, I think there are only a few in the state sector.) Some of these schools are just for dyslexic pupils; the others have dyslexic units attached to them.

These schools are usually the best place for children with severe dyslexia. Children who attend these schools thoroughly enjoy themselves because they are ‘the same’ as everyone else. The majority of these schools take students for a period (approximately two years), and then the children usually go back into mainstream schooling.

Independent Schools Council (ISC)

These schools are approved by the Independent Schools Council (ISC) and the Council for the Registration of Schools.

For further information on the Independent Schools Council, please go to ISC.

‘Register of Schools’

CReSTeD’s main activity is to maintain a “Register of Schools” which provide teaching provision for pupils with Specific Learning Difficulties (SpLD).

This information is supplied free of charge to parents and those who are responsible for choosing a child’s education.

For further information, go to CReSTeD.


List of all Local Educational Authorities (LEA’s)

Find schools, emails, headteachers and addresses in the UK. Lookup LEAs, DfES Performance Information and OFSTED Reports.

For further information, go to ‘All the Schools’ – LEA’s.

 

All Local Authority (LEA’s) Websites

England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland.

This list points to the website of each Local Education Authority.   Local Authority has lists of it’s own schools and details of application procedures.

In For further information, go to School Web Directory.

 


 

Dyslexia - Private Education Centres

If your child has dyslexia and is struggling at school – you can get private tuition at an Education Centre that specialises in dyslexia this can make all the difference. 

In the UK, there are a few, private education Centres that operate between 9.00am to 6.30pm, Monday to Friday (and often on Saturday mornings).

These Centres have thousands of pounds of specialist teaching and testing equipment. Their staffs are a highly qualified specialist and dedicated members of a team. Children usually work for one-hour sessions. These sessions are then split into six ten-minute slots so that the child does not become bored and each activity is different from the previous one.

The school can make an, ‘approved absence’ for an ‘education activity’. The children usually come out of school for an hour once or twice each week.

Most schools are quite happy about this. The children may miss a little time at school, but the benefits are they are not tired at the end of the day, so they are not resentful and make rapid progress. I do not think we should expect children to do extra work after school each day (on top of their usual homework). My children would indeed have kicked up about it!

The fees for these Centres are usually approximately, £25– £50 per hour.


Education Centres that Specialise in Dyslexia
The majority of education centres in the UK, which specialise in dyslexia, are private.

(At the moment, I think there is just a couple in the state sector.) Some of these schools are only for dyslexic pupils; the others have dyslexic units attached to them.

Schools for Dyslexics or Education Centres for Dyslexics are usually the best place for children with severe dyslexia.

Children who attend these establishments thoroughly enjoy themselves because they are ‘the same’ as everyone else.

The majority of these centres/schools take students for a period (approximately two years), and then the children go back into mainstream schooling.

There are specialist education centres/schools for specific learning difficulties/dyslexia, which are approved by the Independent Schools Joint Council and the Council for the Registration of Schools.

Dyslexia Test Centres

There are only a few specialist dyslexia test centres in the country. However, many testers from these centres are willing to travel. The testers are usually happy to represent you at tribunals etc. Always inquire as to the tester’s qualifications before appointing them.


Educational Psychologists – Dyslexia

Educational Psychologists specialise in assessing people with Dyslexia, Dysgraphia or other Specific Learning Difficulties (SpLDs). Psychologists sometimes work for educational authorities, private companies or they may work on their own.

If you are looking for a private psychologist, please make sure they:

* Are ‘Educational’ Psychologists – i.e., specialises in specific learning difficulties (SpLDs).
* Are ‘Chartered’ Psychologists – (meaning they are insured.)
* Regularly update their knowledge with suitable courses.
* Have references available – and do not be embarrassed at asking to see them.
* Have Certificates confirming police checks (see DBS below) – and make sure these are up-to-date.


Specialist Assessors – Dyslexia

Specialist Assessors can assess people with Dyslexia or Dysgraphia. These assessors have special certificates which enable them to evaluate students with dyslexia.  While these assessments are different from psychologists they are valuable in their own right.

These assessors often work for educational authorities, private companies. education centres or they may work on their own.

If you are looking for an Assessor, please make sure they:

* Are ‘Specialist Assessors’ – i.e., specialises in specific learning difficulties (SpLDs) and have the appropriate qualifications.
* Are Insured.
* Regularly update their knowledge with suitable courses.
* Have references available – and do not be embarrassed at asking to see them.
* Have Certificates confirming police checks (see DBS below) – and make sure these are up-to-date.

Teachers/Tutors with Specialist Qualifications to teach Dyslexia

Teachers qualified to teach pupils with dyslexia, undertake further specialist training. Therefore it is essential that tutors you pick are suitably specialists in dyslexia to teach you/your child.

There are many private teachers/tutors who work from home in the evening that teach dyslexia. Lessons usually take place during the school day or after school. If you want to find a tutor that specialises in dyslexia, word of mouth is the best recommendation. 


If you are looking for a Specialist Teacher/Tutor, please make sure they:

* Are suitably qualified with a SpLD qualification.

* Regularly update their knowledge with suitable courses.
* Have references available- and do not be embarrassed at asking to see them.
* Have Certificates confirming DBS police checks (see DBS below) – and make sure these are up-to-date.

When teaching, does the teacher:

* Use a multi-sensory programme such as Hickey, Alpha to Omega or similar?
* Feel qualified to undertake further assessments, as necessary?
* Have computer software to reinforce what the child has learnt and to stop the child from being bored?
* Follow the recommendations from any psychologist’s, school reports etc. that are available?
* Liaise with the school as necessary?
* Give homework each week, (unless you explicitly do not want it)?
* Test at regular intervals to ensure progress is being made?
* Give out regular progress reports and do they charge extra for them?

 


Where to find a Specialist Teacher/Tutor

 If you want to find a teacher that is qualified for dyslexia; word of mouth is the best recommendation.  Otherwise, you can see a list of educational tutors from the various organisations below:

 The British Dyslexia Association has a tutor list.  Further information BDA Dyslexia Tutor List

 ‘Patoss’, has a tutor list.  Further information PATOSS Tutor List.

 


Educational Psychologists can Test for Dyslexia

Educational Psychologists specialise in assessing people with Dyslexia or other Specific Learning Difficulties (SpLDs).

Psychologists sometimes work for educational authorities in specialist departments for dyslexia, private companies or they may work on their own.

All educational psychologists can test for dyslexia or other SpLD’s, but some have more than interest in that particular field of work.

When you contact a psychologist, make sure you explain the main problem with your child or the issues you are having.  Often dyslexia is linked to other learning difficulties, like dysgraphia, dyscalculia, dyspraxia etc., and this is the best way to ensure the psychologist has the appropriate tests to hand.

It is essential to ensure that the psychologist’s qualifications are up-to-date, and s/he has full insurance to assess you/your child.

Tests can take place in an office, workplace, home or on school premises, whichever is best suited for the student.


When  looking for an Independent Psychologist, for your safety, please make sure they:

* Are ‘Educational’ Psychologists – i.e., specialises in specific learning difficulties (SpLDs).
* Are ‘Chartered’ Psychologists – (meaning they are insured.)
* Regularly update their knowledge with suitable courses.
* Have references available – and do not be embarrassed at asking to see them.
* Have Certificates confirming DBS police checks (see DBS below) – and make sure these are up-to-date.

 


Where to find a Psychologist

If you want to find a psychologist, word of mouth is the best recommendation.  Otherwise, you can see a list of educational psychologists from the various organisations below:

The British Psychology Society, further information here.

Educational Psychologists further information here.

Psychologist UK, further information here.

Dyslexia - Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS)

Please make sure anyone you are looking to engage (employ) for private dyslexia tuition, has the relevant DBS checks, (used to be known as (CRB). Once a person has a DBS check, it would appear that is no legal requirement to renew this.

Tutors and Dyslexia

Many authorities suggest a new DBS check every three years. If a tutor is working with student’s with dyslexia, or other vulnerable adults, I think this sounds about the right time.

There are different Certificates, i.e., Basic, Standard and Enhanced.  The Enhanced DBS is the highest level.

Please ensure you check this with the person you wish to employ.

For further information, please go to DBS