Monthly Dyslexia News Digest – October 2018

In the headlines

1 October 2018

A third of Local Authorities face a shortage of dyslexia teachers despite the 2009 pledge from Ed Balls, then Education Secretary, to spend £10million to train 4000 teachers as dyslexia specialists. The Driver Youth Trust have discovered that in the years since the pledge was made only half of the allocated funds have been spent and only 3000 specialists have been trained. The Driver Youth Trust’s Freedom of Information request also discovered that the Department for Education does not record where the trained teachers live and work.

2 October 2018

Matt Hancock MP, Health Secretary, has spoken about his dyslexia for the first time in print for an interview with GQ magazine. He was only diagnosed at university at 19 years old. He talks about how important technology has been for him particularly Microsoft spellcheck. He feels that dyslexia has helped him to think laterally because he has to work round problems. He is still a slow reader so has to have documents written in a ‘pithy way’ and he writes in the same way himself.

3 October 2018

Dyslexia support in schools is being made a priority in Borders Schools by the Scottish Borders Council. They are going to run a training programme for staff and issue a comprehensive set of operational guidelines for primary and secondary schools. Councillor Carol Hamilton, Executive Member for Children and Young People has said that the Council wants to make sure that children with dyslexia are ‘identified in a timely way and are provided with appropriate support’.

4 October 2018

Professor Nigel Lockett, the Dyslexic Professor, who first appeared in the Monthly Dyslexia News Digest in May 2017, is continuing his campaigning for better understanding of dyslexia as a learning difference not a learning disability. He went public with his own dyslexia in 2017 to help people see that anything is possible with the right support.  He blogs at and is Professor of Entrepreneurship at Lancaster University.

4 October 2018

McDonald’s branches in Sweden supported World Dyslexia Day this year by making all of their digital outdoor ad displays simulate the effect of dyslexia by jumbling up the letters out of order. The in-restaurant menus did the same. The ad campaign was an attempt to demonstrate the daily frustrations for dyslexic people.

Here is a short film about the campaign on youtube –

9 October 2018

Made By Dyslexia has published a report called “The Value of Dyslexia: Dyslexic strengths and the changing world of work” on future work-related skills and abilities and how dyslexics possess them. They are campaigning for neuro-diversity in business and better support for dyslexic children in school so they can reach their full potential.

13 October 2018

Read the full report “The Value of Dyslexia” from Made By Dyslexia and EY at the following link.

15 October 2018

The first Global Dyslexia Summit was held in London on October 15 and was livestreamed on facebook here

15 October 2018

Nick Jones the creator of the private members’ club chain Soho House has given an interview to GQ Magazine about how he feels that his dyslexia has helped him as an entrepreneur. He says that he was lucky that his Mother spotted his dyslexia at age 11 or 12 and sent him to Shiplake College, which specialises in dyslexia. He says that his dyslexia makes him look at things differently and create things differently.

23 October 2018

Alistair Low, a games designer based in Dundee, has produced a game to show players what it is like to have dyslexia. The game is called A Familiar Fairytale and is text-based. It uses jumbled letters to simulate the frustrations typically experienced by someone with dyslexia.

There is a short taster demo of the game here at this link –