Those who know a little of my own story will know how much this particular meeting meant to me. The Inclusion and Support Unit arranged for dyslexic children from across Brighton and Hove to come together, and for me to come and spend time sharing my own story, listening to theirs, and answering questions.
I can’t put into words how special it was for me to see these young people who were all aware of their challenges, supported in overcoming them, and even at their young age were able to talk with self-reflection and humour about their lives and barriers to learning.
It’s sometimes said that dyslexics have a ‘superpower.’ I understand why people say that because many dyslexics develop highly developed characteristics to compensate for those that present struggles.
But I think it’s slightly different. I think it’s what we learn about ourselves, the skills we develop when putting in the hard work to overcome barriers, and the sheer perseverance that becomes part of normal life that gives us these characteristics. It’s important because these are all things that people without neurological challenges can learn from us – and that’s a counter-intuitive way of looking at dyslexia because it’s normally assumed that we’re the ones who have to catch up with others!
Anyway, I know you’ll know I’m speaking from the heart when I say that spending time with these talented, characterful kids who are so full of potential was a very moving, meaningful privilege that I was truly grateful for. All the best, Peter.
PS AI is in the news a lot these days. And ever since I started doing these updates some people have been frustrated by my spelling mistakes. The problem has been that I’ve never wanted to waste my team’s time by proofing my social media, I’d rather they were all totally focused on serving residents. But now we have Chat GPT… and for the first time I’ve used it by asking it to spell check this update. So if there’s any problems with this update, blame AI !!