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Bright teenager gains highest English A-level in the country despite predictions she would fail after doctors diagnosed her with dyspraxia

May 22, 2013 by

She scored 99.5% in the module and now is expected to get an A* overall

A teenager who was predicted to fail her English A-Level was allowed to type an exam after being diagnosed with a form of dyspraxia and ended up wit the highest mark in the country.

Frederica Drewer, 18, had been expecting to get a D in her exam, until she was allowed to use her laptop.

Her neurological disorder affects planning of movements and co-ordination as a result of brain messages not being accurately transmitted to the body.

Exam joy: Frederica Drewer, 18, with a letter from the exam board after she scored 99.5 per cent on her A-Level English paper

Frederica had struggled to express herself when writing and was allowed to use her laptop in one of her English A-Level exams.

She sat the paper in January and scored 99.5 per cent – which was the top mark in the entire country.

Frederica did so well that exam board AQA has now asked if they can use her paper as an example to students nationwide.

Top marks: Frederica, who has dyspraxia, was allowed to use her laptop in the exam in January

Top marks: Frederica, who has dyspraxia, was allowed to use her laptop in the exam in January

The exam module paper makes up part of her English A-Level course. Although Frederica was originally predicted to get a D, she is now tipped to get an A*.

Frederica, of Bristol, said: ‘I was shocked when I picked up the results. I went in to school feeling quite down and I couldn’t believe it when I saw the 99.5 per cent.

‘I was expecting to have to resit, but when I saw my result I was blown away. The support I have got since my diagnosis has made a huge difference, I think.

‘I have been able to organise my work better and have gone from a D to A* in one subject.’

Frederica was diagnosed last year after her English teacher at Bristol’s Ashton Park School noticed she was struggling.

She lives with her mother Rebecca, a maths teacher, and her father, Joe, a mortgage adviser.

Rebecca said: ‘People with dyspraxia have organisational issues and handwriting issues. Her English teacher noticed she was making mistakes which fitted the dyslexic profile.

‘The diagnosis means she can now use a laptop to type up her exams rather than handwriting. The dyspraxia went undiagnosed for a long time.’

The student at Ashton Park School sixth form hopes to study philosophy at degree level, after a gap year.

Claire Ellis, spokeswoman at AQA exam board, said Frederica’s achievement during the exam on January 16 was ‘outstanding’.

She added: ‘To get either full or close to full marks is a wonderful achievement.’

Top marks: Frederica Drewer, 18, is studying for her A-levels at Ashton Park School in Bristol

Top marks: Frederica Drewer, 18, is studying for her A-levels at Ashton Park School in Bristol


DYSPRAXIA: THE CONDITION WHICH AFFECTS COORDINATION

Dyspraxia is a condition that affects movement and coordination during childhood.

Youngsters who have the condition are often labelled as ‘clumsy’ and sometimes have problems with language and thought.

It is not known exactly what causes it, although it is believed to be a disruption in the way messages from the brain are transmitted to the body.

The condition used to be called ‘clumsy child syndrome’.

Children with dyspraxia sometimes additionally have attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, dyslexia or suffer from Autism.

The condition often goes diagnosed, but up to one in 12 children could suffer from it.

There is no cure for dyspraxia, although therapy often helps children with their problems.

Having dyspraxia does not affect intelligence, although children with the condition may need extra help as they might find learning more challenging.

SOURCE: NHS

via Bright teenager gains highest English A-level in the country despite predictions she would fail after doctors diagnosed her with dyspraxia | Mail Online.

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