Rhys went to school in the UK but always found education hard, after being diagnosed at age 22, he has achieved an amazing career in education teaching at some of the most prestigious schools across the globe.
Rhys explains how positive interventions at school, such as extra time in exams and the right resources made all the difference to his learning.
“Dyslexia makes life harder, but it will not stop you from achieving your dreams. It does not define you as a person, you are in control of your life and so many other qualities that no one else can imagine.”
I am British and went to school in the UK and I am so proud of myself to be where I am today. As a young child at school I always found education hard. My reading, writing and spelling were always below the ‘average level’. But I was officially diagnosed when I was 22. I had completed my 3 year undergraduate degree and was halfway through my Primary PGCE course. Plenty of interventions at school in reading, writing and spelling. Extra time in exams and given plenty of equipment to help me learn.
The challenges and the achievements
Challenges – I’ve found learning hard. Discrimination from people. Positive – Such a sense of achievement that have achieved everything I have in life despite my disability. I am a teacher of 13 years, 10 as a primary classroom teacher, 3 as PE teacher and in August I will take up a position at the American International School of Budapest as an Elementary School PE teacher. It is a world class international School.
You can reach your goals
I want to share my story with the world and how proud I am to be where I am. Firstly it is an achievement to graduate university with my learning difficulties. After then at 22 I decided to move to London to complete a Primary PGCE. I did that and got a job as a classroom teacher, which was never my strong point as I wasn’t passionate about the subjects of reading and Writing. At 30 years old I needed a new challenge and left the UK to move to Qatar to teach in an International School. However I longed to be a PE teacher and I managed to secure myself a PE teacher position, in a more prestigious school in South Korea, which played to all of my strengths and passions.
After 2 years in the job Covid-19 hit the world, it was time to come back to Europe to be closer to family. So without a job and a young family the pressure was on to secure my future. I targeted 1 of the 3 Elementary PE jobs available in Europe, in Budapest. I knew I would have to work harder than anyone else, so I prepaid myself and passed 2 interviews where my passion and commitment shone through and I was offered the position! I know that 100’s of people applied who are way more experienced, smarter and significantly more qualified but I have a hunger and desire that no one else can match. It feels even more satisfying as I started behind the other candidates due to my dyslexia and now I am on top of the world.
My advice to someone who has recently been diagnosed with dyslexia
Never stop believing in yourself. Find your passion. Work as hard as you can. Surround yourself with positive people and take help when it is offered.