A mother has unveiled plans to help parents learn about dyslexia claiming her own child was told by teachers that he was just lazy.
Rachael Smith, of Sandend, realised that her three sons, Brook, 15, Taylor, 13, and eight-year-old Archie had the condition shortly after they started primary school.
Her husband Barry was diagnosed with dyslexia and it became apparent that their children had all inherited the difficulty too.
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But she claims it was a “battle” to get staff at the school to accept their children were struggling with the condition which can cause problems with reading, writing and spelling.
It was only after seeing her oldest son speak to Archie about how he copes with it that she felt inspired to organise a workshop with a professional to help other parents.
She has arranged for a session to be held at Portsoy Primary School next month and hopes parents and teachers will both benefit from the discussions.
The restaurant manager said: “It started for us when Brook went into primary one and, despite us recognising the signs and asking the school if he had dyslexia they just kept telling him he was lazy.
“In primary six he was diagnosed and thankfully his primary seven teacher was cracking and got him prepared for academy.
“For Taylor, he loves to read but late in primary five he was also found to have dyslexia.
“He got help but then there was nothing more said until he got to second year and was found to be struggling.
“Luckily the support he was given was fantastic and he’s getting on well now, as is Brook although he has been offered a scribe for exams.”
Their youngest son Archie has a more severe type of dyslexia and really struggled in his early years at school.
“He would write words backwards but the letters would also be backwards,” Mrs Smith said.
“We were told all the way until the end of primary three that ‘it’s just the way Archie is’ but we knew it was dyslexia.
“Finally in summer his new teacher recognised it and confessed to us that she didn’t really know what to do and I could have cried.
“We managed to then sort the help he needed and now he’s come on leaps and bounds – a completely different boy.
“Fingers crossed this workshop helps and it means even one less child being told they’re just lazy when they’re actually dyslexic.
“Maybe there’s even someone out there who could turn this into a regular thing so we can build a support network for the kids.”
Mrs Smith has arranged the session with Sharon Hall from Dyslexia Scotland to be held at the primary school on February 19 from 6.30pm to 8.30pm.
She added: “It’s disheartening we had to go through this constant battle, especially with no-one to talk to.”
A spokeswoman for Aberdeenshire Council said: “All schools across Aberdeenshire follow the ‘Addressing Dyslexia’ toolkit to help identify and then support learners who are showing signs of dyslexia.
“This is a comprehensive nationally-led online resource and we also offer in-house training to complement this toolkit.
“We welcome the event in Portsoy, held in partnership with the school to offer additional support for parents.
“We’re committed to supporting all learners to achieve of their best, by putting in place the right support at the right time, and would encourage any parent with concerns about their child to discuss this with their head teacher in the first instance.”