You may suspect that a young person has dyslexia – but does that mean he/she should be tested?
Under the Equalities Act 2010 (which applies to all schools across the UK) schools are required to provide education suitable for the child's particular needs. But of course it is up to each school and its staff to decide what the needs of each child are – taking into account any professional reports that are available. There are some details of the Equalities Act and its provisions here.
In terms of professional reports as to a child or teenager’s likelihood of having dyslexia the only people who can say definitively if this is the case are educational psychologists who specialise in dyslexia.
Such professionals are invariably registered with the British Psychological Society or the Association of Educational Psychologists who can supply details of their members who specialise in this field of work. The cost of a diagnosis will vary but may be around £300.
After such a test being undertaken a report will be issued and this is as close as possible to being a definitive statement on dyslexia; however it is important to realise that this is a diagnosis – it is not a prescription for what to do to help the individual.
An alternative, less definitive but also less expensive approach is to use an on-line test such as that run by the Dyslexia Centre. Because this is taken on-line and thus is not personally overseen by an educational psychologist this is not as accurate as a one-to-one test but it still can be helpful. And because it is conducted on line it is much less expensive than a one-to-one test and full professional diagnosis.
What's more, if the test finds that dyslexia is present, the Dyslexia Centre provides teaching materials that can be used either by the school or the parent or indeed by any adult who can work with the child and who has a normal grasp of maths.
If you work in a school and wish to use the test there are details here.
If you are a parent concerned about a child, or an adult who wishes to know if you perhaps have dyslexia there are details here.