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Best School for Dyslexia UK

Are you looking for the best schools in the UK for children with dyslexia?  It would be prudent to know and understand what it is. Dyslexia is a learning difficulty that affects your ability to read, spell, write and speak. Children with this learning difficulty often find it difficult to connect with others on this level. It can be debilitating and cause the child to be a recluse. 

This disorder can also be found in adults, some of them well known. It takes a child’s strong support system to encourage and hold the child’s morale up. It can be tough, going through school and realizing you are the only one of your friends who can not read or write as they do. It is strongly linked to genes and this means that the condition runs in families. Dyslexia is different for everyone. Some people have a mild form that they eventually learn how to manage. Others have a little more trouble overcoming it. 

Even if children aren’t able to fully outgrow dyslexia, they can still go to college and succeed in life. Some world-famous celebrities are dyslexic and some of them struggled in silence before they found out. Celebrities such as Jennifer Anniston, Steven Spielberg, Whoopi Goldberg, Henry Winkler, Mohammed Ali, and multi-millionaire Richard Branson, are amongst those living with dyslexia. This proves that dyslexia does not need to stop your progress.

Do schools test for dyslexia?

Ths school is one of the first places where any issues that children have with learning, are discovered. It is important that the school is properly equipped to diagnose any disorders related to learning and this includes diagnosing dyslexia. This means that the school’s key staff should be trained to do this. Laws concerning testing differ from one place to the next. We have done our research and found the best schools and our favourite is the Appleford school. The school’s approach to dyslexia uses research-based multi-sensory programs and resources, designed to encourage attainment, self-confidence, and feelings of success. It has a full curriculum leading to GCSE and BTEC in a range of subjects. The classes are small in size in all subjects.

By Region

We have researched and found some incredible schools. You will find them below. They are categorised by region.

England

Holme Court School

Holme Court is an established co-educational specialist day school catering for pupils with dyslexia and associated difficulties.

“The aim of the school is to help pupils to overcome their dyslexia by fulfilling their potential as learners and developing as well-rounded mature individuals who are well prepared for the next stage of their lives.” Ofsted 2011

Location

Cambridge

Ages

8-16

http://holmecourt.com

Fairley House School

At Fairley House, we believe the solution is to give your child a level playing field; a school where all the children experience similar difficulties. By succeeding, some for the first time in their schooling, children can rebuild their self-esteem and confidence. 

It is our aim that most children return successfully to a mainstream environment. Having worked for more than fifteen years in the field of dyslexia and dyspraxia, I understand just how wonderful that breakthrough is for parents and children alike.

Location

London

Ages

5-14

The Dominie

The Dominie is an independent co-educational school which specialises in providing education for dyslexic and dyspraxic children. We welcome children from the age of 6 to 12. The maximum number of children at the school is 32. The school is built around the children.

‘Parents are thrilled with their children’s progress, which they described as ‘tremendous’ and ‘phenomenal’. They told the inspector that The Dominie has ‘changed their child’s life’ and that they ‘couldn’t be happier’ with the school’s work in giving pupils a real chance to feel, and be, successful.’ OFSTED 2018

Location

London

Ages

6-12

www.thedominie.co.uk

The Unicorn School

It is a specialist, independent day school for girls and boys aged 6 to 16 years who have Specific Learning Difficulties: dyslexia, dyspraxia, dyscalculia and Speech, Language and Communication Needs (SLCN).

We offer both primary and secondary education including our GCSE programme.We are a small, nurturing school with circa 80 pupils.  Providing a cherishing environment and specialist teaching, The Unicorn School bridges the gap between our pupils’ current performance and their potential achievement.

Location

Abingdon, Oxfordshire

Ages

6-16

http://www.unicornoxford.co.uk

Abingdon House School

Abingdon House School is an independent day school for pupils aged from 5 to 17 with specific learning difficulties such as dyslexia, dyspraxia and ADD/ADHD, autistic spectrum condition, social communication difficulties and other associated needs.

The teaching and integrated therapy at Abingdon House School focuses on supporting the challenges faced by students with Special Educational Needs, such as working memory, processing speed, executive functioning, sensory processing, social communication needs, as well as the impact these may have on a student’s confidence and self esteem.

Location

London

Ages

5-13

https://www.abingdonhouseschool.co.uk

Centre Academy East Anglia

Centre Academy East Anglia offers an exceptional educational opportunity for children with dyslexia and related specific learning difficulties. We are well-known for our specialist, whole school approach.

The progress our children make is evident as they achieve levels of success previously thought unattainable. It is also evident in the happy, confident and motivated students they become as they engage fully in the learning process.

This Prospectus provides you with important information when considering whether CA East Anglia is the school that will make the difference for your child, either as a day or boarding student. But to fully appreciate our school, I would invite you and your family to visit us. You will meet our staff, tour our lovely buildings and grounds, and speak with the children. You will be most welcome.

Location

Ipswich

Ages

8-18

Calder House School

Located in Wiltshire between Bristol, Bath and Chippenham, Calder House is a small, co-educational, day-school where children with dyslexia, dyscalculia, dyspraxia and language difficulties learn the skills they need to fulfil their potential. We enjoy strong links with the many mainstream schools to which our pupils return, typically after two to three years at Calder House, having learned the skills and strategies they need to thrive.

Location

Wiltshire

Ages

5-13

http://www.calderhouseschool.co.uk

More House School

Nationally celebrated, for eighty years More House has empowered bright boys who might struggle in mainstream schools, to transform their futures and to realise their true potential. The largest school of its kind in Britain, More House offers a full range of specialist support, particularly for boys with specific learning and language-based difficulties, including Dyslexia, Developmental Language Disorders and Dyspraxia.  More House School provides full boarding, weekly boarding and day places.

Many of our boys arrive with little self-confidence. As one community, we build pupils’ academic, creative, sport and social achievement. A wide curriculum of academic subjects is complemented by an inspiring extra-curricular programme, so that each boy is successful amongst his peers, and learns to recognise that success. 

Location

Farnham

Ages

10-18

https://www.morehouseschool.co.uk

Ireland



Catherine McAuley NS, Baggot St.   www.catherinemcauleyns.ie

St. Oliver Plunkett’s

St. Oliver Plunkett N.S. was established in 1975. It is one of four special schools in the Irish Republic, which cater exclusively for children with specific reading difficulties (Dyslexia). The school has grown from 2 teachers and 14 pupils in 1975 to 7 teachers, including an Administrative Principal and over 63 pupils. Additional staff members include six Special Needs Assistants and a Speech and Language Therapist.

Location

Monkstown

Ages

10-18

http://www.stoliverplunkett.ie

St. Rose’s NS Tallaght  

St. Rose’s National School is a co-educational school for children with Specific Reading Difficulties. It is funded by the Dept. of Education and is governed by a Board of Management in accordance with the rules of the Department of Education and Science.

St Rose’s is a happy, child-centred, friendly school. The staff is committed to the development of each pupil to his/her full potential. The school provides a supportive environment for pupils, parents and staff.

At present there are six class teachers and an administrative principal.  Approx. 25 places become available every year and new pupils are admitted in September. The school caters for 8 to 12 year olds (3rd to 6th class) who are enrolled on a temporary, whole-time basis, normally for 2 years. St. Rose’s pupils follow a full Primary Curriculum, (except Irish) where there is a special emphasis on the teaching of English.

Location

Tallaght

Ages

8-12

www.stroses.net

St. Oliver Plunkett’s, Malahide  

In our school, we value the uniqueness and importance of every human being.  We recognise the rights of our children to equal access to all education in our own school, our community and in society as a whole.  We will strive to have all our children realise their full potential in a happy caring environment. We will endeavour to develop a sense of responsibility and adaptability for a changing world.  We will work towards cultivating a positive self-worth and respect for the importance of each individual and each community. We will promote a cooperative spirit and good, independent work habits

Location

Tallaght

Ages

8-12

http://stops.scoilnet.ie

Wales

Tomorrow’s Generation Trust

Our vision is… to develop lifelong learning so pupils may reach their own unique learning potential.  We recognise that Dyslexia is a challenge to individuals and their families.We are dedicated to traditional values such as attitudes, skills, knowledge, and responsibility but recognise that our pupils may not be traditional learners and may need specific help to improve.

To fulfil our vision… We provide an individualised and pro active curriculum which enhances self esteem, provides role models, optimises each child’s potential, develops a lifelong love of learning, builds personal responsibility, and promotes individual respect. We cherish our rich resources and pride ourselves in our commitment to the environment.

Location

Wales

Ages

11-18

https://tomorrowsgeneration.co.uk/about

Ffynone House School

Ffynone House has a reputation for inspired teaching and family values. Pupils benefit from small class sizes and individual attention. As an independent school, we can offer a curriculum that is tailored to the needs and aspirations of our pupils, with an extensive range of subjects that do not include the Welsh Baccalaureate. 

Ffynone House School provides an education for life in an atmosphere where pupils from a variety of backgrounds feel secure and equally valued. In addition to promoting a strong work ethic, we strive to foster a sense of social responsibility, personal development and independent thinking.

Location

Wales

Ages

11-18

https://www.ffynonehouseschool.co.uk/about

St. David’s College Wales

St David’s College has a 50 year success story founded on a visionary approach to education. We are a mainstream independent boarding and day school educating children from 9 to 19 years of age. Through partnership with parents we discover the gifts of each child, remove the barriers to learning and lead young people to realise their full potential. Our highly regarded SEN provision, helping those with dyslexia and associated learning needs, works seamlessly in our mainstream environment.

Location

Wales

Ages

10-19

https://www.stdavidscollege.co.uk

This uniquely innovative approach will provide your child the freedom to flourish.

Scotland

Appleford School

Appleford is a special educational needs school for boys and girls between the ages of 7 and 19, with Dyslexia and Specific Learning Difficulties such as Dyspraxia and Dyscalculia. We are a day, weekly and full boarding school set in 8 acres of parkland 12 miles from Salisbury. First and foremost your child will learn to have confidence in their own ability and develop a desire to do well in their learning.

By being educated in small classes alongside their peers, our children soon learn that there is nothing ‘different’ about them and that their teachers really do understand how to teach them in the way they learn best.

Location

Wales

Ages

7-19

Parent/Guardian’s Guide

Dyslexia may be a learning disorder but it does not mean that your child can not adapt to society and progress. 

Is dyslexia classed as a disability in the UK?

Dyslexia can be a disability under the Equality Act 2010. A disability under the Equality Act 2010 is a physical or mental impairment that affects a person’s ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities. The adverse effect must also be substantial and long term.

Dyslexia will count as a long-term physical or mental impairment. The only question, therefore, is whether or not it is severe enough to have a substantial adverse effect on normal day-to-day activities.

Dyslexia can affect people to different degrees. Extreme cases will certainly have a substantial adverse effect on normal day-to-day activities but more mild cases may not. It is usually best for employers to give an employee with dyslexia the benefit of the doubt and proceed on the basis that they do have a disability.

What Are the Different Types of Dyslexia?

There are different types of dyslexia and different ways to treat it as well. Once left untreated, this disorder can affect a person’s ability to meet their full potential in life. 

The different types of dyslexia include phonological Dyslexia, surface dyslexia, rapid automatic naming dyslexia, double deficit dyslexia, dyscalculia, dysgraphia as well as left-right confusion. 

What are the early signs of dyslexia?

Some of the early signs of dyslexia in children include late talking, learning new words slowly, problems forming words correctly, such as reversing sounds in words or confusing words that sound alike. You may also notice problems remembering or naming letters, numbers, and colors or difficulty learning nursery rhymes or playing rhyming games.

Is dyslexia a form of autism?

Children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) have a higher risk of suffering from several other conditions. The most common neurodevelopmental disorders that can be as a result of autism, is dyslexia. Children with dyslexia may experience visual and auditory processing difficulties, similar to hyper or hypo sensitivity often associated with ASD. Like the ‘islets of ability’ seen in many children with ASD, some dyslexic children may also have strengths in particular areas, such as design, logic, and creative skills

Does dyslexia get worse as you age?

There are no scientific studies to prove or disprove this. However, symptoms may vary depending on the type of treatment you have received since being diagnosed and also depending on how well you have learned to cope as an adult with dyslexia.

How can I tell if my kid is dyslexic?

Some of the markers that your child is dyslexic include your child taking a little longer to talk than most children or having difficulty pronouncing words. There a certain level where it is normal and cute, and then a level when you need to get help. Your child may be slow to add new words to his or her vocabulary or may have difficulty rhyming. He or she may also have trouble with the alphabet, numbers or days of the week.  This is not an exhaustive list however it does give an indicator of the presence of a learning disorder.

How can I help my dyslexic child?

There are different ways in which you can help a dyslexic child. These include multi-sensory instruction in decoding skills, repetition, and review of skills, the intensity of intervention, that is, more than being pulled out of class once a week for extra help.  You can also teach decoding skills, and drill sight words or teach comprehension strategies to help children derive meaning from what they are reading. 

Sources

https://www.dyslexiascotland.org.uk/assessment-schools

https://www.goodschoolsguide.co.uk/special-educational-needs/dyslexia/mainstream-schools

https://www.bdadyslexia.org.uk/advice/children/my-childs-education/choosing-a-school

Final Thoughts

Children with dyslexia are just as smart as their peers. They just do not read and write at the same pace as their peers. This can cause the child to withdraw from society if they do not get the support system needed. A good support system is vital and it includes getting a good school that will allow your child to grow at their pace. We hope that our top selections help you choose the right school with the right support system for your little one.

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