Dyslexia is a learning difficulty that affects millions of people every day. However, not everyone understands the nature of dyslexia. Over the next week, our students will be taking part in Dyslexia Awareness Week to better understand the learning difficulty and challenge common misconceptions so they can become better supporters of those who have dyslexia.
According to the British Dyslexia Association (BDA), the driving force behind Dyslexia Awareness Week, 10% of the British population are dyslexic, 4% severely so. Despite the number of people who have dyslexia, a large amount of the population do not have an understanding of what dyslexia is or the effects it has. It is this lack of understanding that often presents unnecessary barriers for people with dyslexia.
Through Dyslexia Awareness Week, the BDA strives to improve knowledge of the learning difficulty, raise awareness of how commonplace it is, and alter the public perception of people with dyslexia. This starts with education, and our lessons over the next week will contribute toward making a change.
To begin Dyslexia Awareness Week at Gloucester Academy, we are holding an assembly today for all our students to raise awareness of dyslexia. Activities will be continuing throughout the week, as we host a dyslexia-themed bake sale to raise the £190 we need to purchase a new reader pen which aids students with dyslexia. We will also be jumbling up our announcements board in the heart space to give students a sense of the challenges dyslexia poses.
Staff will be on hand at lunch time to offer advice and support to students and give them the opportunity to try the different overlays we have available. The activities are not just focused on students, as one of our teachers who has dyslexia will be sharing their experiences with staff.
Miss Arden, SENCO, said: "We are really excited about the opportunity to raise awareness of dyslexia. We hope to remove the stereotypes and provide a true understanding so that students do not need to feel ashamed by their dyslexia but empowered by their ability to achieve despite it."
At Gloucester Academy, we understand just how important it is for dyslexia to be identified swiftly. Children with dyslexia can experience stress, anxiety, and low self-esteem due to the learning difficulty. The sooner the condition is recognised, the quicker support can be provided and lessons tailored, allowing us to help students develop at their own speed and in comfort.
With our current framework, and activities being used to educate children about dyslexia, we are working to remove the stigma attached to the learning difficulty and provide the necessary support for our students with dyslexia.