Navigating life with a child that has Dyscalculia: Stories from Mastery Schools Australia
Dyscalculia is a maths learning disability that affects around two children in every Australian classroom. According to Learning Difficulties Australia, Dyscalculia is an ongoing crisis that continues to go unnoticed in mainstream schools. Over 10% of school children meet the criteria for Dyscalculia. However, will not receive the support they need to manage it. If these student’s do not get the learning support they need to navigate the challenges associated with dyscalculia, it can affect their ability to understand and perform tasks as they get older, and negatively impact their self-esteem.
In 2022, Helen enrolled her daughter at Mastery Schools Australia (MSA) who at the time was in year ten and suffering from Dyscalculia. Her daughter was struggling to read numbers and solve basic math problems. She went through years of mainstream schooling without the help she needed and began to disengage academically and socially. With her self-esteem shattered, she was rapidly losing faith in her ability to succeed. Like many other MSA families, the impact of her struggles was beginning to affect her entire family and her mother Helen was desperate to find a solution.
Helen said, “I could just see [her] struggling and not connecting to anything. It was like she lost herself because she did not get it. I think the hardest part was she was struggling with maths. So, when she was doing well elsewhere, no one noticed how her struggle with maths was really affecting her.”
Many students with Dyscalculia come to MSA with little self-belief and low motivation to learn. MSA provides a safe and supportive learning environment with small classes, high teacher ratios and tailored learning support for every student so all students feel comfortable enough to learn.
Helen’s daughter came to MSA to repeat year ten. Within twelve months of attending MSA, Helen’s daughter went from refusing to attend school, to graduating year ten accepting multiple awards including the Highest Attendance and Community Values awards. Her twelve months at MSA were enough for her to re-engage with her learning, reconnect with her peers, and improve her confidence.
Helen’s daughter said, “MSA was what I needed, and I now feel like I can actually have a future.”
Written by Ashlee Thomas