LETTER: Living with dyslexia one long struggle

Dear Editor:

I refer to the (Dec. 7) article written by Stefania Seccia regarding the book on dyslexia written by Sue Hall.

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It was not so long ago that a left-handed student was forced to write with their right hand in the classroom. Some even tell of having their left hand tied to their sides, until a lightbulb went on somewhere and the school system stopped trying to force square pegs into round holes.

It is time the school system accepted the fact that dyslexic students learn a different way. That they are talented, intelligent and have the right to be taught in the classrooms of our public school system.

It is also, not so long ago, that dyslexic children were called lazy, slow learners, stupid and disruptive, because some students acted out in the classroom, to hide the fact they could not comprehend. I questioned a little dyslexic eight-year-old once about his unhappiness at school. He turned his innocent little face to me and said, "How would you like it, if you were bottom of the class all the time?"

Now these children can be tested and diagnosed, but guess what? It costs big bucks and because of that, many children are still falling through the cracks. Some parents can afford the assessment, ($1,500) and pay for the special schooling, approximately $20,000 per year. Many other parents are struggling with the same financial burden by making huge sacrifices to the quality of life for themselves and the entire family.

Look at a list of famous world achievers and you will find that so many of them are dyslexic. However, for any dyslexic person, life is one long struggle. With a good start in the school system, life would be made so much easier for them. It is time the school board was given the support it needs to get this different teaching skill happening in the classrooms of our public school system.

Maureen Bragg

North Vancouver

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