Many foster children have significant gaps in their education both from changing schools frequently and having families who don’t prioritize school. That means over half of the children placed at Coyote Hill are reading below grade level. Traci* was one of those statistics, until last month.
Traci was a 12-year-old in 5th grade when she arrived. Her Developmental Reading Assessment (DRA) said she was only able to read at a 2nd grade level. This meant a huge struggle for her, trying to keep up with her 5th grade classwork. Our staff and Traci’s teacher realized she would need a lot of support.
Case Manager and Education Center Director Paige Brokaw put countless hours into that support. She set up tutors to meet with Traci after school. Traci’s Home Parents allowed her to earn privileges at home if she would spend 30 minutes reading daily. At school, her teacher not only worked really hard to help her catch up, she also advocated for Traci multiple times to get her more resources so she could succeed in 5th grade.
By the end of the school year, Traci was reading at a 4th grade level. She improved TWO years worth of reading in just seven months! Her teacher was so incredibly proud of her success that she awarded her “Most Improved” at the 5th grade graduation.
Not only did the improvement show in Traci’s schoolwork, but she also started reading at home just for fun. Sometimes her Home Parents find her reading to her little sister, both curled up on the couch with a blanket, enjoying this new found way of hanging out together. Her improved reading skills have also built her self-confidence. She now calls herself a good reader, someone who likes to read, and is good at it. We are all so proud of how far along she has come.
Thank you for your support that helps Traci and other children like her to reach their full potential.
*name changed for sake of confidentiality