Schools for Dyslexia
Many schools for dyslexia are very expensive. Having run a specialized brick-and-mortar school for struggling learners in Madison, Wisconsin for 8 years before founding Wings to Soar Online Academy in 2011, I definitely understand the costs involved in providing the low student to teacher ratio with specially trained teachers.
Part of the reason I shifted online is because I had had parents in over a dozen cities as I spoke and consulted around the country hearing about my school and saying, I wish your school were here. In many parts of the country, there are no schools for dyslexia nearby as an option. I actually had a family call from across the country considering moving to have their children attend our school. But for most families searching for a school that specializes in dyslexia, moving across the country is simply not an option. Because we are a hybrid homeschool and online school we can serve students anywhere they have internet access. In fact, we currently serve students in over 40 states and 8 foreign countries.
Because parents (or other responsible adults) provide the supervision at home on a day-to-day basis, our teachers can help many more students spreading out the cost of teachers. And since our teachers can work from home we don’t have the cost of a building. This also means that we can hire teachers who are a good fit for our personalized learning philosophy from anywhere in the country.
Some students truly do need one-to-one dyslexia tutoring in-person.
I’m finding that for students who actually engage with the combination of online reading intervention programs we put together for their Path to Success™ Personalized Learning Plan about an hour each school day, we are getting 1 ½-3 years reading gains within the first school year. This is better results than I was able to get most of the time in my many years of Orton-Gillingham tutoring. I suspect this was largely because most families could only afford to do tutoring 1-3 times per week which just doesn’t provide the time needed. But the engaging nature of the quality computer programs we’ve chosen helps, as does the variety the student encounters using our approach.
We welcome families to enroll in as much or as little as is appropriate for their situation. It is common that families start with a year or two of focused reading intervention, often along with cognitive skills training. Then, the student often continues to build their reading skills while focusing in on intervention for building writing skills, possibly paired with our Integrated Liberal Studies approach weaving together history and other social studies with writing and literature. These classes are designed with the student with dyslexia in mind. Accommodations are built in for all students. Other families enroll full-time with Wings to Soar Online Academy where our teachers partner with parents to provide an education that is tailored to the needs of each student. Reading; spelling; grammar, usage, and mechanics; math; cognitive skills; and other areas with a focus on individual skill building are typically done through adaptive computer programs which provide immediate feedback with our teachers overseeing progress and helping to make course corrections and problem-solve. We use small-group (with no more than 9 students in a group) weekly webcam classes for Literature and Composition, science, and social studies classes with assignments provided in online programs in between group sessions. One-to-one coaching is available for math, writing, and student success coaching, as well as for parent accountability and support.
In your search for schools for dyslexia, if our hybrid homeschool and online option sounds like a potential match, I encourage you to fill out the Just-Right Level Assessment request form to get started.