EAST COBB, Ga. — Gracepoint School in Cobb County offers a unique curriculum to children struggling with dyslexia. The school, which started with just four children in 2012, currently enrolls more than 120 students in 1st through 8th grade.
Angie Strack is one of the cofounders but says she never planned on starting a school.
“When I realized my son was dyslexic, when he got his diagnosis, we started looking for schools, and there wasn't anything over on this side of town,” Strack said. “We thought this is crazy. There should be schools for these kids. There are dyslexic kids in every city.”
She says God started placing people in her life, and this was the beginning of a new and incredible journey.
“We didn't even know we were going to start a school, but a good friend of mine had found out that her son was also dyslexic at the same here, and they were the same age,” Strack said. “In my journey of getting to learn about dyslexia, how dyslexics minds work, and how they learn, I met a few other people. One of our first teachers, her son was dyslexic. We kind of just got together and said ‘why don't we start something? Why don't we make it something special, something great, something that's different?’”
Strack and her new friends started with their own kids, the goal being to help the children learn new things and discover their gifts.
“It's about exploring their strengths in order to remediate that weakness,” she said. “Get them to feel successful, get them to be the most successful version of them they can be. They have gifts and they’re so smart.”
Susan Spruill, director of marketing and communications for Gracepoint, says the curriculum is designed to boost the student’s confidence.
“Dyslexia never goes away, so we want to teach these children and give them the tools they need to be able to go onto their next place, wherever that may be, so that they can be successful and have what they need,” she said. “The unique thing about Gracepoint is that we use multi-sensory approaches to learning. So with our students, while they are learning the core subjects just as they would in a traditional school, here we are very much focused on the reading piece and the morphology piece, helping them learn how to break words down to learn what they mean.”
Morphology is the study of the forms of words. Joy Wood, the head of school, says this has been a phenomenal tool for both the students and the teachers.
“It gives the empowerment of knowing words that you would never really pay attention to or think they would be too difficult for you to attack, as far as meaning and pronunciation,” Wood said. “We celebrate the gift of dyslexia. It is a true gift. These children can think so brilliantly in so many different ways, especially in math and science and art.”
“We want to instill in them a desire for learning the purpose that God has for their life,” Spruill said. “As a Christian School, we are able to use God's word and teach these children the things they're going to need throughout their whole life along with the academic side. They are both so important, but the wonderful thing about Gracepoint is we are able to weave them together. So as they are learning how to read, and learning how their brain works, and learning tools they can use to be successful, at the same time they can have a confidence in knowing that they are who they are because that is who God made them to be, and that He has a plan for them. So we teach them to live their life for Him, to bring Him glory in all that they do. It's a beautiful combination, and it works very well together.”
To learn more about Gracepoint School, CLICK HERE.
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