The Dyslexia Association of Hong Kong is made up of a committee of volunteers from various backgrounds including education, speech and language, and psychology.
If you are interested in helping the association in any way please contact us.
We are also happy to field questions and will do our best to respond to you as soon as possible. Our email address is: email@example.com. Because we are all volunteers we may take a day or two to get back to you.
chair: Alison McMillan, Early Literacy & Dyslexia Specialist, Specialist Educational Assessor
Vice-Chair: Barbara Owen, Special Needs Teacher, Educational evaluator
Secretary: Melinda Sturges, Speech and Language Pathologist
Treasurer : Lian Jones, Early Years Teacher
Alison is from Scotland and has lived and worked in Hong Kong since 1989. She originally studied music at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London. She discovered her love of teaching pre-school children during her years of teaching ESL at both the Japanese and the Korean schools in Hong Kong. She holds specialist dyslexia teaching qualifications in teaching children with Dyslexia from New York University and has a Diploma in Dyslexia and Literacy studies from Dyslexia Action in the UK. She is a Specialist Educational Assessor and is a registered practitioner with the British Psychological Society. She is a trained Orton-Gillingham and a Handwriting Without Tears practitioner. Alison has been running her own early literacy program specialising in teaching 4 to 8-year-olds since 1999. She works on a one-to-one basis with dyslexic learners between the ages of 7 to 11. When Alison is not teaching she plays the cello with the SAR Philharmonic Orchestra.
Alison has been a committee member since 2008, Treasurer since 2011 and co-chair since 2017
Barbara has been working as a teacher since 1976 after qualifying with an honours degree in Education at the University of Sheffield, UK. She earned an MA in Applied Linguistics (TESOL) from the University of Surrey in 1996 and a postgraduate certificate in SpLD (Dyslexia) from the Hornsby International Dyslexia Centre in 2002. She completed a certificate course in Psychometric Testing and Assessment and Access Arrangements with Dyslexia Action UK in 2010 and in 2013 obtained certificates in Orton-Gillingham training. Barbara worked in England and Malawi before moving to Hong Kong in 1991 to take up a position as a Native English-speaking Teacher in a local secondary school. She has been working with children with Dyslexia since 2002, providing assessments and after-school tuition for both primary and secondary school students.
Barbara has been a member of the committee since 2005.
Melinda is a UK trained Speech and Language Therapist who has been working in Hong Kong for over 25 years. She obtained her academic and professional qualifications at University College London, and completed an MEd in Special Educational Needs from Newcastle University, UK. The research for her dissertation which was conducted in a local primary school was on the early identification of reading difficulties in young children. Her professional work in Hong Kong has been in two main areas: private practice and in the education and training of speech and language therapists. She has taught for many years as Assistant Professor in the Speech and Hearing Sciences at the University of Hong Kong. Melinda’s major clinical interests are in the evaluation and diagnosis of developmental communication disorders in young children, language-based specific learning difficulties in school-age children, and fluency disorders in adults and children.
Melinda has been Secretary of the committee since 2009.
Lian was born and began her schooling in Hong Kong, before moving to the UK in order to receive support for her own SpLD. After completing a degree in Early Years Education at Edge Hill University, she returned to Hong Kong to take up a post as an Early Years Teacher in an international school. To further her understanding of SpLDs, she began attending workshops and presentations with the DAHK and was subsequently asked to join the DAHK Committee in 2016. In her role as an Early Years Teacher, she hopes to support children with SpLD at the earliest stages. She also plans to undertake further studies in order to further support children with SENs specifically those with Dyslexia. Outside of education, she enjoys travelling and recreational sailing.
ComMittee Member: Ffiona Wilkinson:
Born in Hong Kong, educated in the ESF system before attending boarding school in the UK. Ffiona completed an Masters of Arts in English Literature and History of Art at The University of St. Andrews. Following her CELTA qualification from International House London, she became the English Language Programme Co-ordinator for the Yew Cheung Arts and Language Centre. After two years with YALC, she moved into a freelance role where she worked on HKCEE textbook content. In addition to writing content she developed the syllabus as the Literature in English teacher for the HKCEE Chinese Foundation Secondary School. After three years of freelance writing, a further teaching qualification with Read Write Inc and content writing for OUP amongst others, Ffiona started a new language based tutorial centre with a fellow International House graduate, Passion for Language. After three years experiencing the bespoke tutoring market, Ffiona increasingly found her students needed instruction and materials beyond what current systems and programmes offered. She became qualified as an Orton-Gillingham practitioner and founded Articulate Leaners to work specifically with dyslexic students post diagnosis for over two years now. She joined the DAHK committee in 2017 and is furthering her understanding of OG by becoming Orton-Gillingham Associate.
Committee Member: Shabnam DIWAN, Special Needs Teacher, OG Tutor
Shabnam is from India. She holds a B.A (Psychology), MSc (Child Development and Family Relations) from India and P.G.D.E. (Special Needs) from Hong Kong University. She has also obtained certification in Orton-Gillingham training. She has worked previously as an Early Years Teacher both in India and in Hong Kong. She has also worked in various international schools in Hong Kong both in PYP and MYP curriculum as a special needs co-teacher. Her experience includes working with students with Dyslexia, ADHD and Autism. Currently working in an international school with Primary 5 and 6 students and provides private tutoring at her residence using the OG approach.