What does “literacy” mean to struggling adolescent readers? Can foundational skill instruction respect the dignity of young adults? What does such a program actually look like and where could my high school begin?
Participants will envision an evidence-based lesson through the lens of an adolescent emerging reader. Aspects of leadership are discussed by a superintendent whose dedication to equity led to the first public high school structured literacy program in her state. Successful instructional approaches designed specifically for older students’ unique social and emotional needs are presented by a special educator. Reflections from adolescents highlight the central role reading plays in building belonging — inspiring educators and administrators to meet the needs of struggling older students with urgency, expertise, compassion, and joy.
Sherry Sousa, M. S. Ed., Superintendent, Windsor Central Supervisory Union, Woodstock, Vermont
Sherry Sousa has dedicated her career to working with adolescents with disabilities. In her many capacities serving Windsor Central Supervisory Union, Sherry has focused on providing students with learning differences opportunities to grow and to remain in their home communities. Under her leadership, the role of a WCSU special educator was reimagined as Learning Specialist–reducing the number of students receiving special education services. She has co-authored three books on nonverbal learning disabilities. For the last two years, Sherry has had the privilege of serving as WCSU Superintendent. Sherry is committed to improving educational equity and sees literacy as a key component of that work.
Julie Brown, M. S. Ed., Literacy Facilitator, Windsor Central Supervisory Union, Woodstock, Vermont
Julie Brown has served in a variety of roles including Structured Literacy Teacher, Literacy Facilitator, EL Coordinator, and Special Educator for her district in Woodstock, Vermont. Julie is a licensed Special Educator, Reading Specialist, and EL Teacher. For the past eight years, she has taught middle and high school Structured Literacy and Structured Writing courses. Julie holds a master’s degree in Language and Literacy from Simmons College. She is currently a doctoral student at Mount St. Joseph University studying Reading Science with research interests in prevention and adolescent literacy. Her students are her inspiration.
Bookings are closed for this event.