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Articles by Dr. Carol Gardiner

Trauma-Informed Approach to Improving Literacy for Struggling Students

 Dr. Carol Gardiner  Dec 1, 2022 2:29:01 PM

Kate Barrows, a Readable English Coach, knows that Readable English is what many students need because she has spent her career working to ensure other students aren’t overlooked.

She continued to move through elementary and middle school despite report card notes like:

  • "Not paying attention or progressing"
  • "We are hoping Kate will buckle down and do what she is capable of by the next grading session."
  • "I've never met someone work so hard to be a nonconformist."
  • "Caught by teacher for forging grades, AT celebration dinner for improved grades"

Her experiences from middle and high school included consistent academic failure and a narrow escape from juvenile incarceration and dropout status. Thanks to her transition to an alternative high school program, she was able to not only graduate from high school but is now an alternative school educator and advocate of 20 years (and counting). Kate knows the delicate but necessary balance between repairing educational trauma while tackling decoding and comprehension strategies with a sense of urgency in middle and secondary classrooms.

For this reason, she joined the Readable English team so other students did not need to go through the struggles she experienced. When she saw how easy it was for students to read grade-level material after learning the 21 glyphs that represent the letters' nontypical sounds, she wanted to be part of the solution to illiteracy with Readable English.

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