Dyslexia support workshop coming to Taranaki to help demand for services in region


A dyslexia workshop is coming to Taranaki to train families, educators, and assessors. SPELD NZ course leader Eleanor Boyce pictured.

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A dyslexia workshop is coming to Taranaki to train families, educators, and assessors. SPELD NZ course leader Eleanor Boyce pictured.

What it’s like to live with a learning disability will be the subject of a two-day workshop in Taranaki next month.

It is estimated that 10 per cent of the New Zealand population has a condition such as dyslexia, and the training programme run by SPELD NZ (SPEcific Learning Difficulties) will also offer tools to help in the classroom and home.

The November 7 and 8 sessions, at the Clever Kids Education Rooms in New Plymouth, are a result of growing demand, SPELD NZ executive officer Jeremy Drummond said.

“Thanks to growing awareness, there’s immense pressure on our services in the region.

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“We’d love to boost our teacher numbers in Taranaki. We’re also keen to train another assessor for the region.”

Natalie Wallace, of New Plymouth, did the SPELD NZ assessor training in 2018, spurred on by her own son’s learning challenges.

“After he was assessed, my world opened up to the world of specific learning difficulties.

Natalie Wallace became a trained SPELD NZ assessor in Taranaki after her son experienced learning difficulties.

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Natalie Wallace became a trained SPELD NZ assessor in Taranaki after her son experienced learning difficulties.

“There appeared to be a real lack of awareness and understanding of dyslexia at schools and in the community and seeing my child’s journey through the education system made me really want to make a difference for children struggling to achieve their potential at school.”

Those with teaching qualifications can also go on to do SPELD NZ’s 600-hour, mainly online training, to become SPELD NZ teachers in Taranaki, working one-on-one with children and adults.

Earlybird prices for the introductory course end on October 22 and are $200 for SPELD NZ members and $300 for non-members.

After October 22 it is $250 for members and $350 for non-members.

Training subsidies are available through TSB Community Trust for those in Taranaki interested in becoming SPELD NZ teachers and assessors, and for qualified teachers to attend the introductory course.

The Trust also provides low income Taranaki families financial assistance subsidies to help cover the cost of assessment and tuition.



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