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Non-standard spelling holds students back

Let's stop asking pointless questions ("Is genius in the genes?", Feature, 24 January). Just as identical plants thrive differently in different soils, children born with identical brains achieve different results in different environments.

Our job is to ensure that even the not-so-brainy become reasonably well educated. Far more of them could if we took the trouble to make learning to read and write easier. Orthographic abominations such as "group trouble" and "speak, shriek" make becoming literate far too difficult. If we really wanted all children to achieve, we would do something about such egregious obstacles to learning.

Masha Bell, Former English teacher, independent literacy researcher and author of Understanding English Spelling.

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