Kids with specific learning differences need help too

The Dyslexia Association of Singapore (DAS) agrees with the ongoing discourse that it is critical to help children from disadvantaged homes meet their full potential (Look beyond education to give disadvantaged kids a leg-up; Nov 2).

More than 50 per cent of children with dyslexia attending the Main Literacy Programme supported by the Ministry of Education and DAS are from lower-income families and qualify for bursaries.

At the same time, DAS would like to emphasise that finances are not the only disadvantage in the children's learning journey.

Students with specific learning differences, such as dyslexia, are also significantly disadvantaged compared with their peers in other ways.

Research has shown that dyslexia has a high chance of running in the family, so it is imperative that we help these children break out of a cycle of underachievement.

Specific learning differences also bear significant impact on the emotions and self-esteem of children - compounding the impact on their development.

With appropriate and timely intervention, children with dyslexia can rise above their challenges.

As we look beyond education to give disadvantaged children a leg-up, the case for children with specific learning differences must also be included to realise a truly level playing field for learning in Singapore.

Lee Siang

Chief Executive Officer

Dyslexia Association of Singapore

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 08, 2018, with the headline 'Kids with specific learning differences need help too'. Print Edition | Subscribe