“While more and more districts are realizing the benefits of Orton-Gillingham in the general education classroom, we are always thrilled to be part of a dyslexia specific initiative because it is where the methodology started,” says Jeanne Jeup, co-founder of IMSE. “Children with dyslexia can respond so quickly and their self-confidence soars.”
Krug said the school system also includes Orton-Gillingham on the ATSS chart on all tiers so that it is noted as available to students with dyslexia or characteristics of dyslexia at every stage of the intervention process. A dyslexia brochure is available for parents and staff in both English and Spanish.
Arlington Public Schools teachers and officials say their literacy initiative has been incredibly worthwhile.
One literacy coach said: “Third- and fourth-grade students who were not meeting success with spelling found success with a more explicit approach, a multi-sensory approach. Their success is reflected in both their PALS and DSA scores. The student’s parents have also noted their children’s reading and writing confidence.”
A second-grade teacher noted: “IMSE’s OG has been effective for many of my students. It is repetitive, structured, and has so many great ways for the students to remember the skills taught.”
One first-grade teacher said a student, after a year being taught using IMSE’s OG approach, had a dramatic turnaround.
“A student with an Individualized Education Program who came from kindergarten not knowing letters and letter sounds, with significant deficits in memory and attention, after a year with IMSE’s OG now has consistent memory of their letter and letter sounds,” the teacher said. “The sentence dictation has resulted in growth of concept of word as evidenced by spelling, word space and sentence structure.”
Krug said awareness training on dyslexia for all staff members includes:
- A 10-minute overview video for staff
- International Dyslexia Association handouts with characteristics of students with dyslexia and red flags
- A handout of dyslexia red flags for secondary content teachers that include strategies for instruction and accommodations and resources for consultation
- Creating a training specifically for school psychologists and special education coordinators on: which assessments to use; how to interpret spelling assessments; and providing universal screening in reading K-9; providing parent trainings on dyslexia and how to collaborate with the school system to obtain support and instruction for their student if they suspect their child may be dyslexic.
“We really work on dual missions – to bring the power of Orton-Gillingham to all teachers, so they have this incredible teaching approach in their toolbox as they navigate the modern classroom,” said Jeup. “Also, we are dedicated to continuing our work to make sure educators working with students with dyslexia are confident in the OG approach, since we know it can completely change the trajectory of a child’s education. The dedication we’ve seen to dyslexia education in Arlington is incredible.”
Learn more about IMSE’s Orton-Gillingham Training, see the current training schedule and learn how to bring the Institute for Multi-Sensory Education to your district or school.