About the Awards
Each year, Scholastic asks educators to nominate their students to recognize their dedication and achievements inside and outside the classroom.
In previous years, more than $25,000 dollars has been awarded to outstanding READ 180 and System 44 students and their teachers.
NEW for 2015! In our first annual Scholastic 180 Awards, we'll also be accepting nominations for outstanding
MATH 180 students who strive to "be greater!"
Nominations Closed! Please visit the READ 180 Community in Winter 2016 for next year's awards.
Meet the 2015 Scholastic 180 Award Student Winners!
Congratulates the Sixteen Students from READ 180, System
44, and MATH 180! Thank you to all the educators who participated in this year's
awards and congratulations to all students who were nominated!
Grade 3, Thomas Jefferson Elementary School, Bethlehem, PA
Today, Lily loves reading challenging books and using her strong literacy skills to explore her passions such as writing her own songs. But, she wasn’t always this eager. At the start of the school year, Lily had become unmotivated in school, was hesitant to speak and hated reading. As an English language learner, she needed to gain confidence to succeed and find support from her teacher in her READ 180® classroom. Mrs. McIntyre, Lily’s classroom teacher, wrote, “She has become more aware of her capabilities and encourages her peers to be the best they can be. Her positive attitude and improved fluency enable her to achieve higher scores in all content areas. School is now a place where Lily can showcase her skills rather than sit quietly behind a wall of difficulties… her goals are now obtainable and limitless.”
Grade 4, Robbins Elementary School, Robbins, NC
Mariana has a beaming smile and a desire to do great things in her future. She has had to overcome some obstacles to excel in reading, but Mariana has stayed focused on her path to achievement. Since Spanish was Mariana’s first language, she had limited English skills when she entered school and in return was viewed as a quiet and unconfident student. However, she was quickly inspired by her brother’s success having recently enrolled in seminary school, and his encouragement to read every night. With this, her teacher’s guidance and the personalized support she found in READ 180®, Mariana now loves to read, exchanges books with her best friend and has her eyes set on her future. She shared, “Now I really like to read books aloud to my class. That’s a great opportunity for me to practice being a teacher because I want to be a teacher when I grow up. There are some times that are hard but now I know I can do it.”
Grade 5, Hidden Springs Elementary, Moreno Valley, CA
Kyla came to READ 180® as an extremely motivated learner, knowing that her goals of becoming a top student and achieving her dreams required her to read fluently on grade level. Together with her teacher, Kyla took the time to work at her own pace, increasing her confidence and allowing her to soar to the top of the charts in reading. Now a model student, she takes advantage of the opportunities that come with being a proficient reader—from achieving straight A’s and earning the Principal’s Award certificate for the first time this year, to auditioning for the school play. Kyla shared, “Knowing how to read has given me confidence to learn how to read music and know the notes of my favorite songs. I know that knowing how to read well is the key to all my hopes and dreams for my life. I am going to go to Harvard or Julliard Arts School. I feel so excited about my future.”
Grade 7, Enterprise Middle School, West Richland, WA
Erik is not only a dedicated student who perseveres to achieve incredible gains in his reading ability, but he is also a classroom leader. While he works hard to achieve his own goals, he also takes the time to help his fellow students who are new to READ 180® or those who simply get frustrated. Erik’s own challenges have encouraged him to never give up and learn that every failure is an opportunity to grow and succeed. As much as Erik wants his own success, he also wants it for his friends too. Ms. Sperline, one of his teachers, commented, “There are many things that make Erik Snapp an exceptional student. Erik truly has cultivated a growth mindset. He takes on challenges and makes the full effort.”
Grade 8, West Virginia Children’s Home, Elkins, WV
Katelyn never had an interest in school or reading until she was enrolled in the READ 180® program. With individualized instruction, she was able to experience success and gain confidence in her ability to read. Today, Katelyn can’t read enough and sees the important role education plays in paving the way to a better future. Beyond academic struggles, Katelyn has also overcome personal challenges, including homelessness. Her ability to persevere despite these challenges is apparent when she talks about her goals of attending college and becoming an x-ray technician. In her own words, “With the help of READ 180®, I know that if I set my mind to something I can stay concentrated and get it done. I owe nearly all that I have learned to the READ 180® program. It has given me bigger and better opportunities for my future.”
Grade 8, Hester Junior High School, Franklin Park, IL
Along her journey in the READ 180® classroom, Amy has tapped into her passion to help others—especially in education—and her hopes of one day becoming a special education teacher. With this career goal in mind, she has made great strides in her literacy, which has positively impacted all of her classes. Amy’s enhanced skills have allowed her to do research on autism and cognitive impairments and even earned her entry into programs requiring essay applications, such as the student ambassador program and extra field trips. As an eighth grader, Amy already has a college savings account set up and intends to be the first of her family to continue towards higher education. Amy’s teacher Ms. Kozin said, “Amy has overcome many challenges and works day in and day out to strive for more.”
Grade 9, Oakcrest High School, Mays Landing, NJ
High school is a difficult transition for any student but for Kimbsia, it wasn’t just a new school; it was a new lifestyle. This past year, Kimbsia transferred from Katzenbach School for the Deaf to Oakcrest High School. Kimbsia’s native language is American Sign Language (ASL) and while she has an enormous amount to contribute, she struggled in the past with her reading and writing due to a combination of challenges including English vs. ASL grammar changes and differences in her background knowledge and experiences. By using READ 180®, Kimbsia’s literacy skills began to grow and more options opened up to her. In addition to her determination and active participation in the classroom, Kimbsia is a member of the school track and volleyball team. Ms. Lee, Kimbsia’s READ 180® teacher, shared, “She now readily participates in class discussions through her interpreter where she surprises us all with her thoughtful insights.”
Grade 11, North Olmsted High School, North Olmsted, OH
Jon remembers his academic challenges becoming noticeable around the fourth grade when he began to tell himself that reading just “wasn’t his thing.” He focused his energies on sports as his school work became more and more challenging. It wasn’t until high school when Jon found himself in Ms. Davies’s READ 180® class that he discovered for the first time he wanted to get to the next level in school. Through the use of READ 180, Jon’s reading skills began to improve and he found himself able to help his peers in class—either with tips on how to succeed or with the computers, which are his passion. Jon explained, “With my new outlook on reading, I feel empowered to succeed in life. Reading is valuable in everything we do. My plans for the future are to go into computer technology. In this career choice, reading and comprehension will take a whole new meaning when I begin learning different types of computer language. However, with the tools I have been given through the READ 180® program, I am confident I will succeed.”
Grade 12, Grace M. Davis High School, Modesto, CA
Martin’s education and life were disrupted early on when he and his family escaped from a war-torn Iraq in 2007. During this transition, they waited in a refugee camp in Syria where education wasn’t a top priority—staying together and being safe were their main concerns. In 2010, Martin and his family were thankful to receive the news that they would be able to find a new home in the United States. In California, Martin found opportunities but also discovered he was behind in school. Although English would be his third language, Martin found that he was able to learn and communicate in the United States but still wasn’t doing well in school. It took time for him and his teachers to diagnose that his reading skills were holding him back. Soon after, Martin entered a READ 180® classroom where he began to close the gap between his verbal and reading abilities. Now, he is succeeding and is looking forward to attending community college next year. Martin shared, “I never thought about going to college when I was younger because my family was too busy trying to survive… now I think I can do anything. Anything is possible for me.”
Grade 4, Temperance Kutner Elementary School, Fresno, CA
With great patience, practice, and encouragement from his teachers, Austin has been growing in his ability to read and write through the use of System 44®. In addition to the support of his teachers, Austin’s family is a deep source of motivation to him. Having been adopted from Russia and moved to California when he was young, Austin’s family has been his one constant. His mother, a teacher at his school known for her spirit and strength as she recently battled cancer, is Austin’s role model and inspiration to succeed. As he continues to learn, Austin will model this same determination in himself. Austin’s teacher said, “He never sees mistakes as defeat but rather as opportunities for growth, whether it is in the classroom, on the software, at a cross-country meet, or on the wrestling mat.”
Grade 7, Washington Middle School, Yakima, WA
Oliver is a dedicated student who is involved in his school and always willing to help his fellow students. Among his many activities, Oliver plays violin in orchestra, has been a representative of the Associated Student Body since the 6th grade, has built a robot through the robotics club, and keeps statistics for the basketball team. At home, Oliver’s family speaks Spanish and with his enhanced literacy skills, he helps to inspire his siblings to excel in reading and translates English for his parents when needed. It was System 44® that gave him the confidence in his reading ability to help his family and also to graduate beyond special education classes. He is aiming high for his future! Oliver shared, “My future goal in life is to invent machines and to help all living beings have a better life.”
Grade 7, Brooklyn Junior High, Brooklyn Park, MN
Chief came to America from Liberia last spring and initially was a shy student, reluctant to read aloud in class. Through System 44®, he challenged himself to succeed and believed he could advance his reading skills. Through thoughtful, hard work, Chief accomplished just that and in record time—completing all 160 topics of the System44® program this year! He now provides tips to other students to help them succeed and hopes to one day pursue medicine. “I want to be a doctor because I love helping people. I want to work on the brain; I feel that is amazing,” said Chief. “To be a doctor you have to read a lot.”
Grade 8, SPC Rafael Hernando Middle School, El Paso, TX
Nathaniel found himself having significant difficulties in school due to a learning disability and as a result, he was reading far below grade level. It wasn’t until Nathaniel experienced a System 44® classroom that his story began to shift. With this new found support, he was able to start regaining confidence in his abilities and become a dedicated student, jumping into class discussions and devouring books. Today, Nathaniel is asked to mentor fellow students, is eligible to play on his school’s sport teams (his passion is baseball) and is a member of The Border Patrol Explorers program. Upon graduating from college, he hopes for a career in criminal justice or professional baseball. Nathaniel’s teacher noted, “The beauty of the ambitions he created is that as a dyslexic student, he is keenly aware of the hard work it will take to obtain a college degree, and yet he does not retreat from the challenges.”
Grade 5, Alta Murrieta Elementary School, Murrieta, CA
Emma’s story is all about changing your mindset to succeed and having the power to overcome your personal disbelief in your own abilities. Emma started the year unexcited for school and more often than not, she tried to hide her lack of understanding. After learning about growth mindset—the understanding that intelligence can be developed—Emma started to work hard at math and became willing to make mistakes along the way. Today, thanks to MATH 180®, Emma takes on challenges without fear and is applying this new mindset to all of her classes. Looking ahead, Emma knows she will use math in her career, whether she chooses to explore marine biology or fashion design. Emma’s teacher said, “There are still days when Emma needs reminders that she can do it if she doesn’t give up, but those days are dwindling… the new Emma is willing to keep trying and take risks.”
Grade 7, Southeast Middle School, Baton Rouge, LA
Cameron’s school believes in having “PRIDE”—Perseverance, Respect, Intelligence, Discipline, and Enthusiasm—and he is known to display all of these characteristics in the classroom. At first, math was intimidating and he was very hesitant to try, let alone participate, in class discussions. After some time in MATH 180®, a classroom with a safe environment to make mistakes and take risks with your thinking, Cameron is now excelling. He has even become a mentor to other students and sees how his own learning helps him in other classes. Cameron shared, “One time in science class the whole class had to figure out how much of the ingredients we had to use to get our final answers. MATH 180® helped me succeed that day because we had to do a lot of multiplying and dividing just to get one simple answer.” Cameron found inspiration for a future career after learning about the math that contributed to the space rover that traveled to Mars. He now hopes to become an engineer.
Grade 8, Dater High School, Cincinnati, OH
Celso has a passion for art and he knows that mastering mathematics today will be an important stepping stone to achieve his goal of one day going to college and becoming a professional artist. As an ESL student, Celso is developing his mathematical thinking skills and strategies while mastering his understanding of English. “I have come a long way learning with MATH 180®,” explained Celso. “I am becoming more confident. I believe that I will reach my goal of graduating high school and college so I can get a good job.” Through practice and hard work, he has risen to the top of his MATH 180® class and continues to push himself to expand his knowledge and uphold his school’s mantra: work hard, never quit, care, and prepare for the future.
Student Awards FAQs
Click a question below to see the answer or download the Scholastic 180 Student Awards Awards Terms and Conditions for all rules and restrictions.
The All-Star Awards are now split into two phases: a Qualifying Round and a Finalist Round.
To nominate a student for the Qualifying Round, complete and submit a nomination form and an Educator Statement by February 26, 2015.
Judges will select thirty (30) Finalists (six per READ 180 Stage; six System 44; and six MATH 180) to submit additional information for the Finalist Round.
Finalists have the choice to submit a Written or Video Entry.
The deadline for the 2015 Awards has passed, check back for the 2016 Awards in February 2016!
Submit a completed Nomination Packet by one of three means;
- Visit the website and apply online:
- Email a completed Nomination Packet to:
Mail a completed Nomination Packet to:
Scholastic Inc., All-Star Awards
524 Broadway, 10th Floor, Space 1042
New York, NY 10012
Your Nomination Packet for the Qualifying Round must include:
- Nomination Form
- Nominating Educator’s response to the following question:
In 300 words or less, please tell your student’s success story. This may describe a moment where the student experienced a distinct turning point in academic progress, unique obstacles the student has overcome, newly realized goals for the future, or any information that you believe supports the student’s exceptional dedication to continuous improvement and academic growth.
Remember, the more descriptive you are, the more we will understand about your student.
If your student is selected to compete in the Finalist Round, you will be notified no later than March 3, 2015.
Each Finalist must submit an Entry in EITHER written or video format.
All Finalist Entries (Written and Video) must include:
- Nominated Student’s release form.
- A photograph of the Nominated Student
- Data submitted by Nominating Educator to verify student’s exceptional improvement, as measured by The Scholastic Reading Inventory (SRI), The Scholastic Phonics Inventory (SPI), or The Scholastic Math Inventory (SMI).
Written Entries must include:
Nominating Educator’s response to the following questions:
- In what ways has the Nominated Student shown determination to sustain improvement and effort to continue to raise achievement levels?
- Describe any challenges the Nominated Student faces beyond struggling with academics, including any additional anecdotal information, and how the student has overcome, or is making the effort to overcome, these obstacles.
Describe the Nominated Student’s growth in areas outside academics related to participation in the READ 180, MATH 180 and/or System 44 Programs (aspirations for the future, development of goals, leadership roles, or peer support)
Nominated Student’s response to the following question:
- Using at least 200 words, tell us about how your mindset towards reading or math (depending on software used) has changed. Name a specific time your reading or math skills have helped you succeed. What are some of your goals for the future?
Video Entries must:
Include a film that is approximately (1) minute in length and not exceeding (3) minutes that illustrates:
(a) the Nominated Student’s determination to sustain improvement and effort to continue to raise achievement levels;
(b) the Nominated Student’s exceptional nature and academic performance in the READ 180, MATH 180, and/or System 44 programs;
(c) the Nominated Student’s growth in areas outside academics related to participation in the READ 180, MATH 180 and/or System 44 Programs. A testimony from the Nominated Student addressing the following statement is required:
Tell us about how your mindset towards reading or math (depending on software used) has changed. Name a specific time your reading or math skills have helped you succeed. What are some of your goals for the future?
Nominated Student may also elaborate on any of the above categories, if he/she chooses.
For examples of student testimonials, visit the READ 180 YouTube playlist.
See Terms and Conditions for a complete list of rules.
As many as you want! However, you must submit one nomination form and educator statement per student and each student can only be nominated ONCE.
No, educators must select whether to nominate the student for READ 180 OR System 44. If the student is in a READ 180/System 44 combination class, please nominate the student for the program based off the software they are using in the Software Rotation.
Membership to the READ 180 Community is not required to submit a student nomination.
Qualifying Round: Judges will review the Nomination Packet and assign a score to each Nomination Packet based on how effectively the Nominating Educator’s Statement conveys the Nominated Student’s exceptional success story.
Finalist Round: Judges shall review each Finalist Entry and assign a 12-point maximum score, based on a maximum of 4 points in each category:
(a) The student’s determination to sustain improvement and effort to continue to raise achievement levels;
(b) Student’s exceptional nature and academic performance in the READ 180, MATH 180 and/or System 44 programs;
(c) Student’s growth in areas outside academics related to participation in the READ 180, MATH 180 and/or System 44 Programs.
No additional points or favor will be awarded to a particular Entry format. Video Entries will be judged solely on content and not technical merit.
Yes, release forms are required during the Finalist Round only. Each Finalist Entry must include a Student’s Signed Letter of Parental Consent. All Finalists who submit a Video Entry must include additional release forms from all individuals who appear in the video submission.
All students nominated for the Student Awards will receive a letter of acknowledgement and a certificate of participation.
Student winners will be announced in May 2015.
All-Star Awards Archive
Click on a year below to see previous Scholastic All-Star Award winners!
Age 11 – Grade: 5 – Baker Elementary School, Altoona, PA
Having been homeschooled through the third grade, Michaela entered Baker Elementary School as a fourth-grader with an infectious enthusiasm for learning, but as a beginning reader. It’s now one year later, and Michaela has closed gaps in phonics and surpassed her goals. With hard work and support from her teachers and family, she is now closer than ever to being on grade level. "Due largely to her participation and success in the READ 180 program, Michaela now has many aspirations for her future," noted her teacher. "In addition to attending a trade school, Michaela wishes to play volleyball professionally. Not only has she been practicing her skills, she has been reading books about the sport to learn as much as she can."
Age 11 – Grade: 5 – Canton Elementary STEM Academy, Canton, GA
Today, Dalton loves to read so much that he can often be found reading books for fun at home while other kids are playing video games. But reading wasn’t always fun for him. Before starting READ 180, Dalton was two years below grade level in reading. Also, health challenges forced Dalton and his family to make repeated trips between Georgia and Ohio for treatment. But he always remained motivated to succeed. Passionate about his education, Dalton continued his studies through the use of e-readers. Inspired by the men and women who have served him during his hospitalization, Dalton wants to give back with a career in the medical field. “Dalton is making the connection between his studies and his future hopes and dreams,” said his teacher, Robert Howland. “His positive example makes him a true role model for other students."
Age 11 – Grade: 6 – Sakamoto Elementary School, San Jose, CA
Two years ago, at the beginning of his fourth grade year, Caleb struggled with many of the building blocks of reading (decoding, sound-symbol connections and phonics) because of a learning disability that added to the challenge of learning to read. After two years in intervention programs, first System 44 and then READ 180, Caleb has quickly improved his reading skills, jumping the equivalent of three grade levels in his reading ability. A crowning achievement for him was reading Hatchet, a grade-level text, along with the rest of his classmates. “It was hard, but I had to read it on my own,” he said. His teacher says he is now a leader in the classroom and on the football field, where he dreams of becoming an NFL star.
Age 13 – Grade: 7 – Washington Middle School, Yakima, WA
When speaking with Lisette, you would never guess that two years ago she was a timid student who read on a first grade level. Today, Lisette reads on an 8th grade level and has become a leader at home by helping her siblings with schoolwork. Next year, Lisette will serve as a school mentor to incoming 6th-graders. When asked how READ 180 has impacted her life, Lisette said, “It has helped me read better. I used to read slowly and I used to get frustrated when I was reading, because I couldn’t read fast like the other kids.” Currently Lisette is earning all A’s and B’s. “With the success she has developed through READ 180 her confidence is carrying over to her other classes,” said her teacher, Heather Harris.
Age 13 – Grade: 7 – Spc. Rafael Hernando Middle School, El Paso, TX
A kind and generous “helper,” as his teacher describes him, Jose never hesitates to step up and help his fellow READ 180 students when they need assistance. Just a few months ago, he was a student whose reading scores were holding him back from succeeding in all his classes and dragging down his self-confidence. But all that has changed since the beginning of his seventh grade year. He has already gained the equivalent of two years in his reading skills in this school year. His newfound success has boosted his confidence, helped him become more self-reliant in class, and transformed him into a leader. “This program has given me the confidence needed to achieve better grades in both reading and writing,” Jose said. He says he wants to pursue a career where he can help others. Like his father, he says he wants to join the Army.
Age 13 – Grade: 7 – Upper Merion Middle School, King of Prussia, PA
Robert is an honor student, a member of the student council and a voracious reader. His story inspires because of the obstacles he overcame to get where he is today. A student with autism, Robert was unable to speak until he was 4 years old. In three years since he started READ 180, his reading skills have soared, allowing him to read at a fifth-grade level with the goal of eventually achieving grade level fluency. “Robert has demonstrated remarkable growth socially due to the increase in his self-esteem and self-confidence as he’s found success in his academics,” said his teacher. Robert is a passionate Philadelphia sports fan and continues to read every day with dreams of one day becoming an animator.
Manuel de Jesus Hernandez-Martinez
Age 16 – Grade: 10 – Thomas Dale High School, Chester, VA
Manuel immigrated to the United States from Mexico when he was five years old. Coming from a household of Spanish speakers, Manuel had to learn English at school and translate for his family. At the start of his 8th grade year, Manuel was a beginning reader. Through the use of READ 180, this year he was able to pass all his Virginia Standards of Learning tests for the ninth grade. “One of the biggest ways READ 180 has helped me was when I needed to get my Social Security card,” Manuel explained. “I got the form and was able to read and fill it out all on my own. If it wasn’t for READ 180, I never would have been able to understand he complicated forms.” In 2016, Manuel will be the first person in his family to earn a high school diploma.
Age 17 – Grade: 12 – Dover High School, Dover, DE
At the beginning of his high school career, Michael had significant difficulties with reading because of his dyslexia and because the content at the high school level was simply too challenging for someone so far behind. Fast forward to today: Michael is an All-State football player who is getting ready to graduate and enroll at Delaware State University in the fall. “Big Red,” as he is known to his friends and teachers, gained the equivalent of almost 10 years in his reading ability since he started high school. Thanks to his hard work in READ 180 and his partnership with his teacher, Michael is now an honor roll student and is destined for success, whether on the football field, in the classroom, or in the career of his choice. “Football and my education are going to take me somewhere,” he said.
Age 16 – Grade: 10 – Minuteman Technical High School, Lexington, MA
Originally born and raised in Pakistan, Afnan and her family moved to the United States with hopes for a more stable lifestyle and a quality education. While she started far below grade level, Afnan adjusted to American culture and persevered in her reading goals despite language barriers. Today, she is on the fast track to becoming a proficient reader by the end of the school year. “Now with READ 180, I understand more of what I am reading. I feel confident with my answers,” said Afnan. “I am not nervous to read aloud in class.” Afnan’s determination and hard work have transformed her confidence, inspiring her to study Spanish and receive acceptance into her school’s Health Occupations program with the hope of one day becoming a pediatrician.
Age 15 – Grade: 11 – Westerly High School, Westerly, RI
Prior to moving to the United States, Darline never had any formal schooling in her birthplace, Port-au-Prince, Haiti. After the devastating 2010 Haiti earthquake, Darline arrived in Westerly, RI, reading far below grade level. But, because of her resilience and thirst for knowledge, she overcame the challenge of being an English language learner in a new country and excelled academically, improving her reading by the equivalent of five grade levels in two and a half years. “I decided to make a difference for myself by working hard every day and learning how to be successful in my READ 180 class,” explained Darline. Her academic confidence led her to playing on the school volleyball team, and she would like to one day return to her homeland to inspire other Haitian children to develop a similar passion for reading.
Age 10 – Grade: 5 – Marvine Elementary School, Bethlehem, PA
Jesus moved to Bethlehem from Puerto Rico when he was four years old. As a native Spanish-speaker, language barriers made it difficult for him to master reading and writing in English. In his fifth-grade year, he was enrolled in System 44, and then everything changed for him. In four short months, Jesus was reading on a 4th grade level. “System 44 made reading a lot easier,” Jesus said. “When I read out loud in class I don’t feel nervous like I used to. System 44 has made me love reading.” His teacher, Scott Toonder noted, “Jesus’ transformation has been amazing in so many ways, but perhaps the most striking change is in his attitude toward reading.”
Age 18 – Grade: 12 – Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake High School, Burnt Hills, NY
Matt Schultz is well known in his community as a high school student campaigning for a seat on the local school board, a soon-to-be graduate who will be attending college in the fall and aspires to be a lawyer. But the back story is how in the last two years he has overcome severe reading difficulties and dyslexia to become the confident, high-achieving student he is today. As a junior, he had difficulty reading out loud and lacked some basic phonics skills that made reading hard. And without strong reading skills, succeeding in any class was a challenge. But through hard work in his school’s System 44 intervention program, Matt made huge academic and emotional gains. His is a story of how learning to read can give any student the confidence to reach for the stars. “I was able to overcome the dyslexia,” he said. “Now I’m reading a lot more outside of class, reading bigger and longer books.”
Age 10 – Grade: 5 – Temperance-Kutner Elementary School, Fresno, CA
By the time she reached fourth grade, Jamaica found herself reading far below grade level. In fifth grade, she began System 44, and has been making steady gains ever since. “Before System 44, I wasn’t really reading my books. I rushed through and I really didn’t understand the words that were in them,” said Jamaica. “After System 44, I read my book six times. I knew the words and I took my time. On my quizzes, I got 100%!” As the oldest child in her family, Jamaica plays a prominent role in the upbringing of her three siblings. Despite all obstacles, Jamaica is known for her upbeat and positive spirit in the classroom, on the cheer team and in the school choir. Jamaica is well on her way to her goal of reading on grade level.
West Central Elementary School, Joplin, MO
When Karen moved to the United States from Mexico a year and a half ago, she didn't speak a word of English. With only two years of READ 180 instruction, Karen is reading above her fourth-grade peers at a fifth-grade reading level. Karen noted, "Before I was in READ 180, I didn't read at all at home. Now, I can't sleep at night without reading. READ 180 changed my life!" Karen's new skills have enabled her to help her cousins improve their reading and spelling as well; her goal is to keep working hard in school so that one day she can get a good job and earn money to support her family. Of Karen's achievements, her teacher writes, "Karen has the confidence now to live her dream, even though she is in elementary school. She knows now that she can do whatever she wants to do with her life because she has found success, which she says comes from READ 180!"
Doyle Elementary School, Doylestown, PA
Once described as withdrawn, Emmett found a new sense of self-confidence through READ 180 and has gone from being a struggling reader himself to giving support to peers who are performing at a lower level. Now reading on grade level, Emmett has shown three years of growth since being enrolled in the READ 180 program two years ago. His teachers speak highly of how hard he works to do his best. With his positive outlook and determination, Emmett has gotten involved with extracurricular activities like basketball and the school safety program. "READ 180 has changed my school experience," wrote Emmett.
Barse Elementary School, Vineland, NJ
When she started third grade, Keily struggled so much with reading that homework would often take her three to four hours to complete. Raised in a primarily Spanish-speaking home, Keily never gave up on her desire to read and write in English. Now fluent, Keily often translates for her parents and helps her cousins with their reading and homework. By improving her reading and strengthening her writing skills and vocabulary, Keily is on track to become grade-level proficient. With her newfound writing ability, she now produces stories that reflect her love of pets and her career goal of becoming a veterinarian. "Keily has gone from a student who rarely volunteered to an enthusiastic participant," said Keily's teacher.
West Virginia Children's Home School, Elkins, WV
Allyson was repeating seventh grade when she arrived at West Virginia Children's Home School, and was reading at a
first-grade level. Through READ 180, Allyson has discovered her ability to learn and succeed when she applies herself.
"READ 180 has changed my attitude about school," Allyson explained. "This experience has changed my grades dramatically
from all F's and D's to a 3.5 G.P.A." She is now receiving A's
and B's on her report card and has advanced from a first-grade
level to a fifth-grade level in less than two years. Allyson wants
to be the first child in her family to walk across the stage and
receive her diploma.
John Poole Middle School, Poolesville, MD
Keyon, who you may recognize from ABC's Extreme Makeover: Home Edition,
has also received a "reading makeover." When Keyon
entered the READ 180 program, he faced challenges at home
and in school. Several years ago, his aunt passed away,
leaving behind ten children who joined Keyon and his three siblings
in their home. In addition to adjusting to his new home
life, Keyon was reading far below grade level. Through his hard
work and determination, Keyon has made two years' worth of
reading gains and is now reading on grade level. "My school
experience has changed a lot because of READ 180,"
said Keyon. "Before READ 180, I never read chapter books on my own. I would just skim through them. Now, I like
to read in my spare time." After high school, Keyon plans to attend college, where he would like to study to become a
Waubun High School, Waubun, MN
After taking the state standardized test for reading, Sequoyah was scored at far below proficient and was categorized as needing an intensive reading program. Thanks to his enrollment in READ 180, Sequoyah has made tremendous academic gains in all his classes. With two and a half years of growth, and now reading on grade level, Sequoyah has graduated out of READ 180 and is enrolled in all regular education classes, earning A's and B's. "His greatest accomplishment was graduating from READ 180," noted Sequoyah's teacher. "This year is a whole different world for Sequoyah as he seems to walk taller, has a bigger smile, and has the best grades he's ever had."
Souhegan High School, Amherst, NH
Originally from Ukraine, Oksana moved to the United
States not knowing any English, but over the course of the past few
Oksana has been able to overcome the language barrier to achieve
academic and personal success. When she entered READ 180,
Oksana read at a first-grade level; today, she is on the fast track
to read on grade level by next year. Oksana's teacher notes,
"READ 180 became a safe haven for Oksana, both socially and academically. She used that space to test waters, take risks,
and to gain the confidence she needed to assimilate to the new world of high school in the United States." Thanks to all she
learned in READ 180, Oksana recently passed the written component of her driver's education course.
Liberty High School, Liberty, MO
Before entering READ 180, Jake had been placed in various intervention programs that were not successful. In class, Jake would joke or ask to use the hall pass when his teacher would ask him a question. Through the READ 180 software, Jake was able to listen to words he didn't know, work on his vocabulary, and refine his writing. Since enrolling in READ 180, Jake went from reading at a sixth-grade level to reading at a twelfth-grade level, and no longer hides from work. Jake has graduated out of READ 180 as an advanced reader and is on track for college, where he would like to study business. "Not only did READ 180 help me with my reading, it helped me in my other classes," he said. "Because I became a better reader, my grades have improved and I am able to do my work and not just joke around in class."
Burlington High School, Burlington, VT
As an English language learner from Rwanda, Yvette
needed intensive instruction. While in Rwanda, Yvette had a fractured
experience and limited exposure to English. She entered READ 180
as a quiet student who was insecure about her reading,
writing, and speaking. Yet, despite her struggles in school, Yvette
handled the transition to American society and education with
grace and determination. Yvette's resolve to succeed has helped her
to read more and she now enjoys reading. Today, she is able
to read at a sixth-grade level. She said, "I honestly believe that READ 180 has been critical in helping me to reach
my goal of going to college."
Lisa J. Mails Elementary School, Murrieta, CA
Graduating out of System 44 was a tremendous
accomplishment for Nazem, who started the program two years ago as a
timid student who struggled with reading, writing, and spelling.
Today, Nazem continues to grow in his reading and is on a path
to reach grade level in less than a year. "When my teacher told me that I passed, I was so happy. It was the first thing
I told my mom and dad when I got home from school that day," Nazem said. His enthusiasm is contagious: as a result of his
success in System 44, Nazem has become much more invested
in his education and has even enrolled in the Science Club to
further develop his interest in science experiments. He aspires
to be a professional basketball player, but thinks college is
a good idea and is focused on continuing his journey to improve
his skills and abilities.
Beacon Hill Elementary School, San Antonio, TX
Daniel went into System 44 certain that he'd hate it; however, since beginning the program in January 2012, Daniel's reading level has increased by two years, now putting him above the class average. Daniel says that System 44 has helped him to love books. In fact, he read 30 books in a year, and has set a personal goal to read all of the books in the System 44 program. "The System 44 books have become a comfort to him and he goes to them when he feels angry or down on himself," noted Daniel's teacher. His newfound love of reading has helped him feel empowered and given him more self-confidence.
Lakewood School, Carpentersville, IL
Originally from Mexico, Eduardo's first language was Spanish, and when he was initially enrolled in the System 44
he had great difficulty on his placement test. While struggling
to read and learn English, Eduardo also had difficulties with his
speech. After his experience in System 44, he can now
read at a third-grade level and was nominated to represent his class
at the Service-Learning Youth Leadership Conference because of
his excitement about learning, his leadership qualities, and his respect
for others. Eduardo's teacher stated, "Eduardo started the year standing out because he struggled in English. Now, he stands out
because he radiates determination and success in everything he sets his mind to and works to achieve."