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Pupils: Dyslexia

Volume 461: debated on Tuesday 19 June 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many children of (a) primary and (b) secondary school age in each local authority area were diagnosed with dyslexia in each of the last 10 years. (141219)

The available information has been placed in the House Library.

Information was collected from schools on pupils who are supported at School Action Plus and those pupils with statements of special educational needs (SEN) about their main or primary need and, if appropriate, their secondary need for the first time in 2004.

Information on the number of pupils with dyslexia alone is not collected centrally. Figures relating to pupils with Specific Learning Difficulties have been provided. Pupils with Specific Learning Difficulties have a particular difficulty in learning to read, write, spell or manipulate numbers and this includes pupils with dyslexia, dyscalculia and dyspraxia.

There are a number of sensitivities about categorising pupils by their type of SEN. It is important that anyone using the data should be aware of the concerns and also understand the limitations of the data’s reliability and validity. There are a range of factors which may affect the data recorded, including:

Local interpretation of definitions

Classification of children with multiple needs

Statistics are based on school and local authority identification of need rather than a diagnosis by medical of psychological staff

Availability of special school provisions in Authorities