FUNDS > Learning Differences Field
Boon’s core-funders support professionals in the learning differences (LD) field because that is where the best teaching methods are used and the most effective professional learning is conducted. LD organizations are a research repository that advance multi-sensory teaching methods and that have mastered individualized learning techniques. Experts in the field are already training public school teachers, schools, and districts, to adopt research-based literacy instruction with sustainable training results. But insufficient funding for LD nonprofits limits the ability of the field’s experts to work with more educators and students.
Our aim is to provide funding to targeted organizations, continue to assist in developing institutional partnerships, and work to transfer the LD field’s research and best teaching practices to professional learning programs in mainstream education. In fact, evidence-based research from the learning differences field is the basis for BUILDING BLOCKS FOR LITERACY®, a professional development program that trains childcare providers in explicit literacy instruction methods. LD research established the Orton-Gillingham Approach, informed the National Reading Panel recommendations, and is the basis of the IDA Standards.
Preliminary grants have made some LD organizations stronger and have established collaborations to increase the numbers of students and teachers served. Additional funding will help bring more organizations together to form a unified, strategic vision of the field’s role, and give them more resources to provide professional learning to underfunded individual teachers, schools, and school districts, not just for LD students, but for all students.
Professionals that work in the learning differences field successfully educate the most challenged students in school who have dyslexia, attention or hyperactivity issues (ADHD), dyscalculia (comprehending math), dysgraphia (difficulty with handwriting), and more. While only 1-5 students has a specific learning disability, the teaching expertise found in the field has tremendous value to all teachers and learners.