A little bit of historic educational prejudice ...

In the long gone past, when I worked in further education - we would occasionally employ students who had promise and were very capable as visiting lecturers. At most, some would get three hours a week - sometimes it was based on supply/demand where we had to solve an immediate skills gap in our teaching provision - often it would be because they had shown promise and an opportunity would arise.

One student (like many) - was a whizz with computer hardware and decent with networking skills, so was perfect for a basic computer maintenance session. Except - my boss did not want to employ them. The prejudice was simple - we gave them a couple hours a week additional support because of their dyslexia.

Paraphrasing my line managers words from memory - "how can we employ someone getting additional support as a tutor?". My reaction was a mixture of incredulous and ape shit - my response was simply, what is the point of additional support if you are saying that we cannot employ this soul.

As boss at the time had sign off - I had no power to solve this problem, however it occurred at a time when I decided that enough was enough and was already seeking pastures new.

My view is simple, additional support is there to enable anyone to reach the common goal of the primary qualification they are taking. Once they reach it, if they reach it, then they are equally employable - if they are the right person for the job. This is not the case for everyone with additional support, however, additional support must not be the barrier or the reason for dismissing them out of hand.


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