Sept. 29, 2011
-- By all accounts, The Learning Alliance summer programs at The Boys and Girls Clubs of Indian River County, Vero Beach location, the Gifford Youth Activity Center, and the Children’s Home Society were a huge success. 65 children received high quality, one-on-one literacy tutoring for 6 weeks. Volunteers from all walks of life, including teachers, attorneys, high school and college students, and a psychologist, were trained by The Learning Alliance in The Sonday System, an evidence-based literacy intervention program. Children were tutored one-on-one, ten at a time, and groups were rotated throughout the morning.
Kelly Palmer, School District of Indian River County Reading Coach at Highlands Elementary School, was the program coordinator at The Boys and Girls Club. “The relationships between the tutors and students were amazing; I could feel learning taking place,” Ms. Palmer remarked. “Students were transformed as their skills improved; one little boy was so shy and introverted at the beginning of the summer and so much more self-confident by the end.”
Students were assessed before, during and after the program. Data indicates great progress; one child who scored a 15% on an assessment test at the beginning of the summer scored 85% by the conclusion of the program. Ms. Palmer points out that such progress can make a world of difference in the school classroom. “I have a child in first grade at Highland Elementary who participated in the program. Before the summer, she would have been at the bottom of her class, struggling. Because of The Learning Alliance her baseline reading score is the highest of all of the first graders here at our school!
The Learning Alliance continues its programs throughout the school year at all 13 elementary schools, during the school day. This year, The Learning Alliance will reach over 1600 students.
The Learning Alliance is dedicated to dramatically improving student literacy in Indian River County, Florida. Through innovative, evidence-based approaches to teaching and learning, we empower teachers to transform children’s lives. Through partnerships with the School District of Indian River County, Indian River State College, and civic youth organizations in our community, we hope to create local solutions that can serve as a model for the nation. All programs of The Learning Alliance are made possible through the generosity of our Founders, including Ray & Jean Oglethorpe, Don & Patsy Riefler, Barbara Becker Hurley, Dace & King Stubbs, and Whitney & Betty MacMillan. For more information, please visit our website www.thelearningalliance.org.
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The Learning Alliance, in cooperation with its community partners, is dedicated to delivering the latest advances in science-based education techniques to area teachers.