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3rd grade reading levels improving at The Foundations School

Published: May. 27, 2022 at 7:37 AM EDT
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Schools are winding down for the summer prompting many families to reflect on the accomplishments over the year.

The Foundations School integrates the arts into their curriculum and is hyper focused on reading proficiency, especially around third grade. That is when they say students make the important switch from “learning to read” to “reading to learn.”

“It’s a wonderful community-based school,” said Janelle Fulford.

Teachers and parents came together on the last day of class to celebrate a year’s worth of work from students on full display.

“The teacher makes sure they track his reading levels,” said Fulford, “we even have time together as a family to read at home.”

She believes her son Zayin’s passion for reading at home stemmed from the classroom.

The arts fostered his creativity and a foundation for his overall success.

“It’s going to make him a better person for life,” she said.

“We want to have all our students reading at grade level by third grade,” said Jerry Crank.

Crank is the school’s chief operating officer. He says getting kids on track following the pandemic was a challenge met with a careful strategy.

“It helps that we have an assistant teacher in the classroom all day, every day, so we can divide students in groups,” said Crank, “which accommodates differentiated learning, so every student is getting what they need for that hour reading block, not just what’s being taught for the scheduled curriculum.”

Last fall, less than half of new students were reading at grade level. In just one year, that number has jumped nearly 25%.

“It’s about getting them on track over time,” Crank said. “As excited as we are about the results with our third graders, I’m really eager to see the impact we can have on kindergarteners and first graders.”

The Foundations School is already enrolling students as they prepare to open in a new location off 45th Street this fall.

Tuition operates on a sliding fee scale, but WPTV is told no students are turned away.

Scripps Only Content 2022