Sarah, a 4th grader, was referred to JCOS by her public school guidance counselor after unsuccessful attempts at Response To Intervention (RTI) programs were implemented. Sarah did not have grade level phonemic awareness that negatively affected her ability to learn and achieve at grade level curriculum. Behaviorally, she became the quiet girl who doesn’t cause any trouble; academically she was falling behind all her peers and felt alone and isolated. Her guidance counselor was searching for a school with the flexibility to provide more individualized instruction to children who need it, based on demonstrated needs and not simply on test scores and chose JCOS.
Daily lessons utilizing multi-sensory instruction targeting skills required for the proven achievement of reading, writing, and spelling was provided. Baseline assessments were given and a program was developed with the level of difficulty determining the amount of time necessary to acquire each new skill. Ongoing assessments tracked proficiency while maintaining the structure and sequencing of the program. Judith Hochman’s Basic Writing Skills, a writing program for struggling writers, dovetailed into the program. Across the curriculum, direct instruction models were used with teacher-led differentiated instruction in a multisensory milieu. Audiobooks and Smartboard technology were utilized throughout the day for visual enrichment and hands-on student participation.
Today, Sarah has become an active participant in the classroom and shows real leadership skills. She thrives on the one-to-one instruction as well as small group activities. Sarah completes her homework independently, and her parents say they have a happy, confident daughter.