Trail Blazers Make Books Come Alive for Children in Special Education

Trail Blazers Make Books Come Alive for Children in Special Education

Students with learning challenges will receive supports to meet critical academic benchmarks, through a grant to The Shadow Project

July 22, 2019 (Portland, OR) – The Shadow Project, a Portland nonprofit committed to making school more accessible and engaging for children with disabilities, has received a $7,500 LEARN grant from the Trail Blazers Foundation Fund of The Oregon Community Foundation. The grant will expand a Reading Mentors program through which elementary school students who were reading up to three below grade level have increased as much as two years in reading proficiency.

The LEARN grant is awarded to organizations throughout Oregon and SW Washington that support youth in their journey to and through high school, and ensure students meet critical academic benchmarks, such as third-grade reading proficiency, increased attendance, and a successful transition from 8th to 9th grade.

In Oregon, 79% of students with disabilities do not meet the benchmark of third-grade reading proficiency that predicts high school graduation.

With the support of the LEARN grant, The Shadow Project will expand its Reading Mentors program in Portland and McMinnville. At 10 high opportunity elementary schools, students with dyslexia, ADHD, autism and other disabilities will have unlimited access to an audiovisual library that allows them to see and hear words at the same time, making books come alive. Students will also be paired with caring mentors who motivate them to set reading goals and celebrate their progress.

The Trail Blazers are dedicated to positively impacting the lives of children and families who have been historically underserved, where they live, learn, and play.