Adaptive Learning

Ocean Beach SD Adopts Adaptive Program for Reading Interventions

Washington's Ocean Beach School District (OBSD) has adopted an adaptive learning program in an effort to accelerate student growth.

"We had been using different reading improvement strategies but student growth had flat-lined," said Amy Huntley, program coordinator for interventions, assessment and curriculum at OBSD, in a prepared statement. "We began looking for something different that could meet students' needs in a more efficient way and that wouldn't require one-on-one instruction from a teacher or paraprofessional."

The district launched a pilot program using Scientific Learning's Fast ForWord in June of 2015.

"By the fall, our schools wanted to expand Fast ForWord because of the results they were seeing and because they wanted to get more students on the program," said Huntley.

The district has, since then, expanded use of the program to all of its schools.

"Fast ForWord remediates the underlying difficulties that keep struggling readers and English language learners from making progress" according to a news release. "It starts with cognitive skills such as memory, attention and processing speed and works from the bottom up, using the principles of neuroplasticity."

"In the past, our interventions primarily focused on reading fluency but that doesn't necessarily help with comprehension or other components of literacy," added Huntley. "Fast ForWord allows us to hit a much broader spectrum of skills that students need to become good readers and to improve their performance in all areas."

About the Author

Joshua Bolkan is contributing editor for Campus Technology, THE Journal and STEAM Universe. He can be reached at jbolkan@gmail.com.

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