Dyslexia in the news this week

Notable Australian’s Struggle with Learning Difficulties Stigma

Speld Victoria Media Release: 31/05/2015


An article in the Sydney Morning Herald today notes that David Day's new biography, due to be released next week contains claims Paul Keating lives secretly with a Learning Difficulty.  The article also notes that Mr Keating has did not cooperate in any way with the biography. This follows six days after dyslexic author Jackie French was awarded Senior Australian of the Year. 


Regardless of whether or not this claim is true, it highlights a dichotomy faced by Australian adults with dyslexia. 


Dyslexia, and other Specific Learning Difficulties affects 10% of Australian’s on a continuum from mild to severe. 


Speld Victoria Chief Executive Officer Clare Carmody says that sadly most people with dyslexia don’t actually know they have it and often those that do feel the need to keep it a secret their whole lives. 


“By definition dyslexia is intellect independent so the damaging, common community misconceptions that dyslexia is an intelligence or motivation issue are completely false”. Ms Carmody says.


Speld’s Patron and notable Dyslexic, Keith Houghton, Emeritus Professor of the Australian National University says that it is regrettable that some of the most successful dyslexics never feel confident enough to come out’ because they are concerned about the stigma.


“The world is designed for people that are competent with words and dyslexia is a barrier to entry. I am continually amazed to meet people that have succeeded in the world of words that have been blessed with the gift of dyslexia”. Professor Houghton adds.


As Patron of Speld Vic he is a driving force behind an adult support group - a place for adults to share their story, their strengths, their hope.


“If you are dyslexic you are not alone.  You may not want to come out but you are not alone.”


Speld Victoria’s Adult Peer Support Group which runs on the first Wednesday of every month.  Professor Houghton will be sharing his personal story at first meeting of 2015 on Wednesday March 4th at 6:30pm at Speld Victoria, 60 High Street Preston.


Speld's free and confidential advice line is 1800 051 533 or infoline@speldvic.org.au


Media Contact


Clare Carmody ceo@speldvic.org.au 0450 718 054 


Congraulations Jackie French 

Media Release 26 January 2015 

SPELD VIC and Auspeld would like to congratulate Jackie on her award and recognise her hard work towards assisting those with learning difficulties. 

"failure is not an option" 

Watch her powerful acceptance speech below- what an inspiration to us all! well done Jackie! 


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