A newly purchased literacy program at Giant’s Head Elementary School will provide continued help for young students who are at risk of learning difficulties.
Sally Gfeller, special education teacher at the school, said research shows 10 to 15 per cent of the population have learning disabilities, and many early elementary school students require extra support before they become reluctant readers.
“The impact of a learning disability can be alleviated by timely and thoughtful intervention in the early years at school,” she said.
A few years ago, the school district introduced and invested in a Levelled Literacy Program for Grade 2 students, to give those requiring extra support a more explicit and sequential intervention.
The challenge after Grade 2 is in finding appropriate resources for young readers that can still pique their interest.
The Summerland Kiwanis Club has provided the school with $5,000 to purchase the next set of Levelled Literacy Intervention books for the school, so that Grade 3 to 5 students can continue benefitting from the high calibre texts.
“We were blown away with their generosity,” Gfeller said. “This is a gift that makes a massive difference to our community.”
She added that the books are expensive, since they feature a controlled vocabulary, tailored to the literacy needs of the students.
If the students can be identified by Grade 3, they can receive additional help to become better readers, she said.