NO ‘QUICK FIX’
It certainly wasn’t a ‘quick fix’ process. Only after decades of this meticulous approach did Toe By Toe eventually become the fully functioning system we have now. Through all those years, Keda had never planned to publish her literacy work. Until her retirement when Stan Hinchcliffe, her wonderfully supportive headteacher (and another hero of the Toe By Toe story) exhorted:
“For God’s sake Keda – don’t retire, die and take this with you. This is important!!”
Stan knew better than anyone what a powerful tool Keda had created because not a single child had left his school for a decade who couldn’t read. ‘Toe By Toe’ got its name after a grateful parent told Keda that she could see how it worked: “Progress by tiny steps – almost one toe at a time…”
Keda at a meeting of Dyslexia, Ayrshire
THE SUCCESS OF HER LIFE’S WORK
Keda retired from Sandal Road Primary School in 1989. On Stan’s advice, she used her teacher’s pension to finance Toe By Toe and it was finally published in 1994. Thankfully, it has become a phenomenal success. Since publication, Toe By Toe has sold more than 500,000 copies, helping hundreds of thousands of struggling readers, young and old, overcome their difficulties and, as a result, dramatically change their lives for the better.
Keda’s ‘Little Red Book’ has now taught so many to make more sense of the world they live in. Toe By Toe is used in more than 20,000 schools around the UK and Ireland, as well as gaining converts in more than a hundred different countries all around the world. This includes primary and secondary schools, Higher Education colleges, basic training institutions, prisons, young offenders’ units and military camps.
Keda at a Dyslexia Conference in the USA
Toe By Toe is used in remarkably diverse places and situations worldwide, ranging from Aboriginal prisoners in the deserts of Western Australia, to posh prep schools in the highlands of Kenya, to remote regions of the Yukon in Canada. It is used in the Falkland Islands in the South Atlantic and the Gilbert Islands in the South Pacific. Maori school children use it in ‘buddy schemes’ and it is working its magic with ethnic Chinese children in Hong Kong and Singapore.
Truly, Toe By Toe has a global reach and universal appeal.