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Oak Foundation Learning Differences Programme Abstract Oak Foundation commits its resources to address issues of global, social and environmental concern,

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Presentation on theme: "Oak Foundation Learning Differences Programme Abstract Oak Foundation commits its resources to address issues of global, social and environmental concern,"— Presentation transcript:

1 Oak Foundation Learning Differences Programme Abstract Oak Foundation commits its resources to address issues of global, social and environmental concern, particularly those that have a major impact on the lives of the disadvantaged. Background Information Oak Foundation is a group of philanthropic organisations which, since its establishment in 1998, has given more than 2,400 grants to not-for-profit organisations around the world. The resources of Oak Foundation originated from an interest in the Duty Free Shoppers business which Alan M. Parker helped to build up. The headquarters is in Geneva, Switzerland and there are programme offices in several other countries around the world. We have nine programmes: Child Abuse Environment Housing and Homelessness International Human Rights Issues Affecting Women Learning Differences Special Interest Grants Oak Zimbabwe Foundation Oak Denmark Foundation Oak Foundation Programme Team Stacy Parker-Fisher Head of Programme Dana Brinson Programme Officer Niketa Koonce Fellow Kelli Rogers Programme Assistant Data Collection and Analysis We support research and activities that contribute to both knowledge about and strategies available to students (from primary school to university) who struggle in school as a result of learning differences. These differences represent a profile of learning strengths and weaknesses which, when understood by the student, parent and teacher, can be addressed and leveraged to promote success at school. References A Mind at a Time by Mel Levine Square Peg: My Story and What It Means for Raising Innovators, Visionaries, and Out-of-the-Box Thinkers by Todd Rose Universal Design for Learning in the Classroom: Practical Applications By David Rose Timeline and/or Next Steps View the Oak Foundation annual report by visiting our website j Results and Lessons Learned Approximately 20 per cent of children (10 million students) in United States public schools have learning profiles that are not aligned with the expectations and teaching methodologies prevalent in mainstream school systems. Referred to as learning differences, this includes, but is not limited to: dyslexia; attention issues; and learning disabilities. As a result, these students are often perceived as not being capable of performing well in school, unmotivated or just not trying hard enough. These students often disengage with school, perform poorly and may not graduate from high school. Those who do graduate often choose not to pursue post-secondary educational opportunities. As adults, many are under-employed or can even end up in prison. However, this is a loss of a critical resource in our society. Paradoxically, these learners bring the strengths of persistence, alternative problem-solving approaches and creativity along with their capable minds -- to school, and later to the workplace and society. Strategic Direction for the Learning Differences Programme Students with a wider range of learning profiles achieve success within K-12 public schools and transition to and through college and other post- secondary opportunities. Secondary Goals Broader school reform efforts that support students with a wider range of learning profiles are: Strengths-focused Student-informed Effectively preparing teachers to support diverse learners Conducive to innovative learning environments Policy-shaping Collaborative—nationally and internationally Inclusive of Universal Design principals that reduce print and other barriers Secondary Goals Broader school reform efforts that support students with a wider range of learning profiles are: Strengths-focused Student-informed Effectively preparing teachers to support diverse learners Conducive to innovative learning environments Policy-shaping Collaborative—nationally and internationally Inclusive of Universal Design principals that reduce print and other barriers Principal Goals 1. Learning environments expect and support variability in student learning profiles. 2. Non-judgmental language is routinely used to describe learners. Principal Goals 1. Learning environments expect and support variability in student learning profiles. 2. Non-judgmental language is routinely used to describe learners. #3 Stay involved in other initiatives : School reform Policy Human capital development Parent engagement and advocacy #3 Stay involved in other initiatives : School reform Policy Human capital development Parent engagement and advocacy #1 Focus on learning and adoption of evidenced-based approaches such as: Response to Intervention (RTI) Mentoring Transition support to college #1 Focus on learning and adoption of evidenced-based approaches such as: Response to Intervention (RTI) Mentoring Transition support to college #2 Initiate feasibility studies, research and development that fill in gaps: Tools and resources Non-judgmental language New interventions #2 Initiate feasibility studies, research and development that fill in gaps: Tools and resources Non-judgmental language New interventions Oak Initiatives: The Next Five Years Longer Term Goals Ultimate Intended Impact #4 Remain responsive to innovation #5 Engage student voices #6 Expand internationally #4 Remain responsive to innovation #5 Engage student voices #6 Expand internationally * Struggling learner as a result of mismatch of learner profile and learning context *Student engaged in RtI *Undiagnosed LD *Undisclosed LD *No Longer Eligible for Services * Struggling learner as a result of mismatch of learner profile and learning context *Student engaged in RtI *Undiagnosed LD *Undisclosed LD *No Longer Eligible for Services **Identified and eligible for services as Learning Disabled


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