D16 Teacher Receives Scholarship to Aid Struggling Young Readers

Posted: February 20, 2009

School District 16 teacher Karen MacDonald is attending classes this academic year at the Eastern Canadian Institute of Reading Recovery for a 10-month graduate program focusing on how best to teach Grade One students who have difficulty with early literacy. The graduate study, done in cooperation with Mount Saint Vincent University in Halifax, NS, is part of a training program that will qualify Mrs. MacDonald to be a Reading Recovery teacher leader. As a teacher leader, she will train groups of teachers for Reading Recovery, support the work of previously trained Reading Recovery teachers, and teach children having difficulty learning to read and write. In addition, she will provide advice at all levels of the local education system and community regarding the operation of Reading Recovery in District 16. The scholarship award was made possible by a grant from the Deluxe Corporation Foundation to the Reading Recovery Council of North America. Under this year’s grant, six school districts in the U.S. and Canada each received a $15,000 grant to pay a portion of teacher leader training costs in the 2008-09 school year. The Deluxe Corporation Foundation’s “Reading Is For Life” grants helps schools carry out programs that serve students who struggle with reading. Reading Recovery is a highly effective one-to-one tutoring intervention in which specially trained teachers work for 30 minutes each day with Grade One students who are having difficulty with reading and writing. In just 12 to 20 weeks, 75% of students who have the full series of lessons reach grade level standard. In addition to the Reading Recovery tutoring, these skilled teachers typically work with other students in the classrooms and small groups. District 16 has had Reading Recovery since the 1995-96 school year. In that time, 1100 children have had Reading Recovery lessons, and 45 teachers have been trained to do the program. Superintendent Lawrence Keoughan said, “This grant is important because District 16 assumes the entire financial responsibility to maintain Reading Recovery in our District. Early literacy is a high priority for us, and Reading Recovery is an important part of our early literacy strategy”. About the Deluxe Corporation Foundation The Deluxe Corporation Foundation is a grant-giving institution that has partnered with educational, cultural and human service non-profit organizations for more than 50 years to enrich the communities of Deluxe Corporation employees. An independent 501(c)(3) organization, the Deluxe Corporation Foundation receives funding from Deluxe Corporation to support its mission of giving back to the communities it serve. Deluxe Corporation helps financial institutions and small businesses better manage, promote, and grow their businesses. The Company uses direct marketing, distributors, and a North American sales force to provide a wide range of customized products and services. It also sells personalized checks and accessories directly to consumers. For more information about the Deluxe Corporation Foundation or Deluxe Corporation, visit deluxe.com About Reading Recovery Council of North America Teacher Leader Scholarships Scholarships for graduate study are awarded by the Reading Recovery Council of North America, a non-profit association with more than 7000 members dedicated to “opening doors for children who initially struggle with learning to read and write”. Since the scholarships began in 2000, school districts have received more than 100 grants that help offset the cost of training teacher leaders. Schools from the United States and Canada are invited to submit applications for funding.