Dyslexia? I don't care what they think
The thing is, there will always be some schoolteachers - and even professors, no doubt, who fail to realise that parents know their children. And when someone's ten year-old son can explain the theory of relativity to them but not get the six letters of his own name in the right order, that parent would know there was something amiss.
And when the boy in question is generally amenable and obliging but is reported by teachers as lazy and deliberately obstructive, the parent definitely smells a rat. Especially when she has another son who can spell perfectly well but who also does happen to be inclined, on occasion, towards laziness and disruption (constructive disruption, of course...) but no complaints are forthcoming about him at all, she realises that she doesn't have to be Albert Einstein herself to know that there is a major problem.
The school refused to test him, on the gounds that "He's intelligent, so he can't be dyslexic." ??? This was their Special Needs Co-ordinator! But we somehow found the money and commissioned a 15-page report by an Ed Psych to try to convince the school that he was extremely dyslexic and therefore should perhaps be allowed to play out with his friends sometimes instead of being kept in every break and lunchtime for "refusing to get his spellings right". This report the school refused to read. "If you pay someone £180 to find something wrong with your child, they will find it," his teacher famously said.
Tom can spell now. And go out when he wants to. And he has his self-respect back too.
But I have to say, the so-called education system we have in this country doesn't seem to know much about learning.