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Primary schools with good special learning support

  1. #1
    zebedee is offline Registered User
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    Primary schools with good special learning support

    My 8-year-old daughter has been assessed as being very likely to be dyslexic. There's a big gap between her spoken and written abilities. All the information I have had so far seems to suggest that symptoms can be moderated if extra help is given as young as possible.

    The school she is currently attending has no special learning support at all, so all extra help she gets would need to be provided outside school. I am concerned about so much spare time being taken up by "work" which might turn her off learning altogether.

    I have heard good things about ESF special learning support (but it may be hard to get in), and HK Academy (very expensive). Does anybody have any experience to share about these or other schools? And any idea how hard it would be to get in for a child born in December '03?

    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    nicolejoy is offline Registered User
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    My daughter (only 18 months) has a physical disability and I have been looking at different schools and what policies they have. My current thought is that ESF has the best support for special needs - they have a large network and significant resources devoted to such students. I've also heard a lot of good reports about Harbour School - http://www.theharbourschool.edu.hk/ but it also very expensive, and doesn't go all the way through - I can't remember what grade it goes up to, your daughter may already be too old...

  3. #3
    AmyH is offline Registered User
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    http://www.hlyis.edu.hk/default.aspx...D-6C4CEE39B081

    It might be worth speaking to HLY. They are out in Tai Po.

  4. #4
    MommyTo3 is offline Registered User
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    ESF would definitely be an option. But I don't think you'll have any "priority" because of learning support, so you would just end up on the waiting list. Obviously schools are balancing learning support student numbers, so that also has to be taken into consideration (the amount of support needed, please note that a part of support could be parent funded and you would have to pay additionally).

    Another option is Harbour School, I have a friend there who's not extremely excited about the school considering how much they're charging (her child has no special needs).

    You would have to contact the ESF school in your catchment and see. I assume she's a 2003 child (unless she turned 8 this year), so she should be entering Y5 in August. Y5 spaces could be slightly easier to get by but still hard.

  5. #5
    bloominginHK is offline Registered User
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    My daughter was assessed as the very same at the beginning of this year. She attends CAIS (Christian Alliance International School). She tested at around a 30% at the beginning of the year with her English language abilities and in November she tested again at 90%. I have been VERY impressed with the support she has gotten. She has come a LONG way since September. She was placed in a class where they run a phonics course that is made for dyslexics. It's only about 30 min a day but what a difference it's made. Her classroom teacher is so encouraging and also fantastic about making sure she does not feel behind, dumb, etc... and offers her the extra help when needed.

    As your daughter is 8, I would think she would have a good chance of being accepted as it's not a terribly large school and they are trying to increase students as they are in the process of a new building expansion. Though obviously I can't promise anything.

    I would love to chat and get some ideas on how you work with her! We are trying a variety of methods for spelling... but we're now seeing the problems arise in her math and I'm just stuck on that one. :)

    If you have any more questions, feel free to ask!!

  6. #6
    zebedee is offline Registered User
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    Thanks for the suggestions, keep them coming!

  7. #7
    HappyV is offline Registered User
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    If you want to apply for a learning support place at the ESF, you need to call them ASAP.

    They offer three 'grades' of support:

    Level 1 and 2: operates within the mainstream classroom - you apply using the normal procedure.
    Level 3 and 4: operates at a mainstream schol but involves a lot more support and withdrawal from class.
    Level 5 and 6: usually for students with multiple or complex needs. This happens at the Sarah Roe School near Mongkok.

    Put your paperwork in as soon as possible. We have been on the waiting list for two years..........and that's just the wait for an assessment: it can take up to 36 months to get a place after this takes place! (They do a much better job than any other school in Hong Kong in terms of the number of places.......)

    Also look at Kellett School - they do a very good job with more 'straightforward' learning issues such as dyslexia/dysgraphia. My understanding is that there is a certain level of support provided within the normal fee structure, and you may need to pay extra for some 1-to-1 help on top as needed.

    Harbour School is excellent, but as someone mentioned, it is pricey. However, if your child does not need regular one on one support (just someone who knows what they are doing) then the price is not incomparable to other international schools.

    Have you considered getting some private therapy to help with the school that you are at now?

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