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Teacher training for dyslexia must be made mandatory to help support students who need it – Lombard

7th October 2021 - Senator Tim Lombard

Teacher training for dyslexia must be made mandatory to help support students who need it, a Fine Gael Senator has said.

Senator Tim Lombard was speaking after a forum he hosted in the Oireachtas to support Dyslexia Awareness Week.

Senator Lombard said: “Mandatory teacher training in the area of dyslexia will help support students who need it and will also support teachers to feel confident in the classroom. Given that 10% of the population are dyslexic, this is something that should be mandatory and a core element of teacher training.

“I commend the work of the Dyslexia Association of Ireland and it was great to be able to host them in the Houses of the Oireachtas where they gave a detailed presentation to TDs and Senators. Their survey shows that 91% of their members want mandatory training on dyslexia for all teachers.

“It also reveals that only 23% of parents are confident that their child’s teachers have a good understanding of what dyslexia is and the learning support needs of their child. This is not good enough, but it is not the fault of teachers. During initial teacher education, only 18% of teachers received training on dyslexia. Teachers need their education to equip them to support all students with varying needs.

“Mandatory teacher training in dyslexia would be fair to the pupils who need it, and teachers.

“I also believe it is time for the establishment of a special task force to focus on dyslexic services in both Primary and Second Level education. This task force could examine the type of teacher training needed to best support students with dyslexia,” Senator Lombard concluded.

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