Voices from the community
[The] public school refused to acknowledge or accept the dyslexia diagnosis until she was seven. … Without timely remediation, my daughter is barely able to read and write in English as she enters Grade 3. … In the meantime, her mental health is strained because she is keenly aware of her learning differences and extremely frustrated by the fact that she struggles to read and write. … Last year she asked Santa Claus for “the power to read” – she’s still wondering if she’ll ever get her wish.
- Parent of 8-year-old
In high school we had access to supports such as a resource room and guidance counsellors. However, because I was compliant, because I took academic subjects, because I didn’t complain, because I refused to show either my emotional and educational struggles at school (specifically before classmates), I never received extra help. …. No one will ever know the amount of at-home learning and work that was required.
- Student, now age 20
My child … was not tested for his disability with a psycho-educational assessment until Grade 7 at the age of 13. This is way too late – and he is experiencing social and emotional heartaches and stress because of this late diagnosis. … He is reading at a Grade 2 level in Grade 8. … The sadness and failure I feel as a parent for my son is painful.
- Parent of 14-year-old
Children should not have to wait years to access services. … Trying to get my son's needs met in the public school system has been one of the most difficult and challenging tasks I have faced as a parent.
- Parent of 10-year-old
We as parents don’t expect the world from our schools. But we did expect she – a smart, curious, creative girl – would get the same opportunity to learn as her peers. This has been denied [to] her. And she is not alone. In every class, she had at least one, maybe two or three classmates with dyslexia or another learning disability. They all struggled. Sadly, our story is not unique.
- Parent of 12-year-old
Because they have not given her the tools be literate, I’ve had to step in and tutor her at home, as I have now done with my youngest daughter as well, since they are content on letting her fail first. If I was confident that my daughters wouldn’t see it as being a punishment for being dyslexic, I would homeschool them.
- Parent of 9-year-old
At his Grade 8 IPRC [Identification, Placement, and Review Committee] the plan was to do nothing and send him on to high school at a Grade 4 reading level. They were going to implement nothing until I went to a lawyer. … After a summer of back and forth on [the] phone with [the] lawyer, the Empower program was put in place for the second semester [of] high school. But since then, nothing again.
- Parent of 15-year-old
We chose to pay to have the assessment done as the waitlist is ridiculous. We were told the waitlist was two to three years. … There just isn't enough support for kids with LD. Teachers are busy with the large classrooms and don't have the time to help the kids that need one-on-one time. There are not enough alternative teachers to help. Once a week isn't enough.
- Parent of 11-year-old