In the past 20 years, RITES has given thousands of struggling students the key to lifelong success. Here are simply a few who’ve been thriving recently. There are so many more, in fact 100 students await the life-changing skill of learning to read and succeed in school. To learn more about students and families who are still waiting and very deserving, click here.
Crucial partner in her child’s progress
Ariana (pictured here with her RITES teacher Allyson Villari) is an adorable 2nd grader who struggles with dyslexia and ADHD. Her mother recognized there was a problem, especially as the school considered retaining her in 1st grade. Ariana’s mother began searching for help and found RITES. Mom works hard, and struggled to pay for Ariana’s tutoring. She also has another child and she suffered a medical issue over the summer, straining her resources beyond the breaking point. Because RITES expanded our financial assistance program in 2016 by 77%, we were able to offer Ariana tutoring with full financial aid. She was able to attend the Code Breakers small-group summer class, and then resume one-to-one tutoring with her same RITES teacher, all with RITES financial assistance, keeping the delivery of services seamless, so Ariana could continue to experience academic growth and success.
Ariana is making good progress. She came to us reading at a pre-primer level and is now reading at about a beginning 2nd grade level. Her mother is very grateful and sees RITES as a crucial partner in her child’s progress:
“Ariana has shown an 80% improvement in her reading! She is happier at school, and less scared. It’s hard to find places to help. I’m so glad I found RITES.”
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Confidence & self-esteem soared
Desperate to keep momentum going
Eli first experienced the difference RITES can make in the summer of 2015, when he attended our Code Breakers 5-week, small-group summer program. When he began as a rising 4th grader, he was reading at about an end-of-1st-grade level. He had a lot of ground to make up and few resources to do so. He attended the program on full financial assistance from RITES’ supporting donors, like you. Through the five weeks, Eli’s confidence and self-esteem soared, and he felt true academic success for the first time. As the program was coming to an end, his grateful parents turned to RITES once again, desperate to keep the momentum going, but fearful that they wouldn’t be able to, because they couldn’t afford our $60/hour fee.
Through the collaborative efforts of RITES, Eli’s school, and his family, we have been able to provide ongoing Orton-Gillingham tutoring from a RITES teacher, which will continue through the summer and into the next academic year. Eli’s O-G trained RITES teacher travels to him and is now able to work with him four times a week for maximum progress and impact. The specific services RITES provides are even built into his IEP. He is currently working at an end-of-2nd-grade level for reading and continuing to make progress.
The difference his RITES experience has made is palpable. The school trusts the quality of instruction and level of support RITES provides. Eli has made huge strides in a relatively short amount of time, and myriad professionals who work with him are able to see the difference and attribute it clearly to his work with his RITES expert teacher.
Met needs of each of their children
Breadth of expertise across teachers
Yianni and his brothers are “veteran” RITES students. Stratos and Kostas started with RITES back in 2010. Six years and 4 RITES teachers later, they are thriving. Stratos is doing well at UMass Lowell and Kostas plans to attend Suffolk University in the fall. This family is a great example of how RITES adapts to fulfill the changing needs of the students we serve. Yianni’s two older brothers began with reading and writing support from their RITES expert teachers. They received steady tutoring in these areas for two years, until they were able to apply what they had learned independently. In 2015 and the boys were getting ready to take the SAT. Their mother turned to RITES once again, having learned we provide one-to-one SAT prep and our RITES teachers had been specially trained in the nuances of the test, combining our extensive learning differences and learning styles knowledge with high-stakes test-taking strategies.
In the meantime, in 2013, younger brother Yianni began reading, writing, and study and organizational skills tutoring at RITES. He is currently an 8th grader and working on his study skills to prepare him for high school. This is a family who understands and appreciates the breadth of expertise the RITES staff has, benefiting directly from the wide array of services and teacher choices under the same umbrella to grow with the needs of each of their children.
Arnold is an adult with one simple, unassuming goal – to learn to read. He is unemployed and has an income well under $10,000. He has tried to get and keep a job, but his inability to read has been an ongoing obstacle. Financial assistance and tutoring in reading from RITES could be the key to breaking this cycle for this hopeful adult and provide him with the tools for his own success.
Sonya and Katie
Sonya and Katie are sisters who need help with reading comprehension, math, and study skills in order to be prepared for middle school and beyond. Their social worker mother was laid off from her job. Even when she had this income, they still lived below the poverty line. Every day the girls go to school and get further behind is a painful reminder to their mom of the gap between wanting what’s best for her daughters and what she can provide.
Ed and Kyle
Ed and Kyle are brothers who struggle in school. Ed is a 4th grader and Kyle is in 7th grade. They both are about 3 grade levels behind in their reading and writing. Time is running out for these boys. The sooner they can get help, the better chances they have for closing the gap and becoming more confident learners. Ed and Kyle deserve to feel successful in life. Your help could be their hope.
Jose was able to take RITES’ intensive Code Breakers: Unlocking Reading, Writing and Spelling class with full financial assistance, thanks to supporting donors. Jose made impressive progress, increasing his decoding/reading skills by 45% in just 5 weeks. But, when the program was over, he had to join the end of RITES long wait list for individual tutoring financial aid. His single mother is unable to work and has almost no income. She worries about Jose sliding back while he waits for services, especially after he had the chance to experience success with RITES’ help.
Jackie is a current 6th grader who is several grade levels behind in reading. She struggles with reading comprehension and writing. She was able to attend a RITES summer program with partial financial support, exposing her to active, helpful strategies to improve these skills. While she waits for financial assistance for individual tutoring, her reading and writing skills languish, widening the gap between her and her peers, and making middle school a tougher mountain to climb.