The Hoboken Public School District (HPSD) in New Jersey stands out as a prime example of this bedrock truth. There, two dedicated educational leaders — Sandra Rodriguez-Gomez, Assistant Superintendent, and Christy Gaudio, Supervisor of English Language Arts, K-12 — spearheaded the adoption of the Institute for Multi-Sensory Education (IMSE) literacy approach across grade levels. And the results have been nothing short of spectacular.

HPSD is now outperforming the state average in New Jersey for all tested grades in English language arts.  

HPSD is also outperforming all traditional K-12 districts in Hudson County, NJ for all tested grades in English language arts.

According to the New Jersey Student Learning Assessments third-grade data for Spring 2023:

Perhaps most heartening of all has been the dramatic growth in teacher confidence across the district, as educators are empowered to truly teach children how to read. 

As Sandra explained, “It’s critical right now for education leaders to take an honest look at their school curriculum — schools need leaders who are willing to consider new approaches. IMSE says it best: Every child deserves to learn to read and every teacher deserves to have the tools to make that happen.”

How did HPSD achieve these extraordinary results in three years, while also experiencing the pandemic? By having a team that is fully trained in IMSE’s Orton-Gillingham literacy approach. Across the district, all teachers are now prepared with this training, which is rooted in decades of research in the science of reading. IMSE’s practical approach breaks reading and spelling down into smaller skills involving letters and sounds and then builds on these skills over time. The training is clear, easy to implement, and can produce strong outcomes for even the least proficient readers.

The results of IMSE’s training can be measured in data, but it’s the impact it has on individual student lives that is most meaningful. Christy recalls one early elementary student who was a full grade level below reading proficiency at the start of the school year. “She was very self-conscious about her struggle, which is so disheartening when you’re an 8-year-old,” said Christy. “But with all her teachers being IMSE-trained, this student was able to progress by mid-year to being just one level below grade-level proficiency. And even more importantly, she now identifies herself as a reader!”

Learn more about how to ignite literacy in your role with this video that reveals how educators in the Hoboken Public School District were empowered by IMSE’s approach to effectively teach all children to read.


Like what you read?