With special needs, one size does not fit all | Letters
Letters: Principal Dr Neville Brown defends the cost of private provision for dyslexic students at his school, Evan Bayton calls for better support in mainstream education, and Ian King writes about suffering from dyscalculia
) – I will quote it again.In a recent case statement, Walsall LA wrote that the Staffordshire SEN commissioner had shared the following information: “As independent schools go, the fees are quite modest and therefore there may not be a significant difference between the cost of provision in a local mainstream school and the cost of provision at Maple Hayes. This can make it difficult for us to win tribunals.”
In vilifying Maple Hayes, Prof Gibbs has chosen the one school that uniquely provides the opposite of what the dyslexia establishment says about dyslexia. Maple Hayes does not resign pupils with Education,Healthand Care (EHC) plans to the ministrations of generic teaching assistants, does not use phonics or multisensory methods, achieves outstanding GCSE accreditation for all its pupils, and “Outstanding” recognition from Ofsted – all more cheaply and efficiently than can any local authority, all by principles and methodology developed by research that are applicable to the education of all children, and all freely available to those with the ability to develop them.
Dr Neville BrownPrincipal, Maple Hayes Hall school, Lichfield• Prof Simon Gibbs is right about difficulties of learning to read and education. There is a glaring absence of appropriate diagnosis and support for students with conditions like dyslexia, and the “one size fits all” system in most state schools aggravates this. With precision assessment, and the provision of support in ordinary lessons, the majority of students could learn in mainstream education. For example, foreign languages could be taught by speaking from day one rather than through the emphasis on literacy. If the French Foreign Legion can do it there is no reason why schools can’t.Read more: The Guardian »
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