Bel Air school helps students with dyslexia succeed in academics

BEL AIR, Md. - Students are working hard to master their academic subjects at the Highlands School in Bel Air.  Harry Heaps is in the sixth grade.  Reading is not easy for him.

"When I came here I had trouble with reading and I still do because I have adhd and dyslexia. I was also having trouble with math.  I was having trouble with my times tables and teachers have helped me a lot," said Harry.

The Highlands School has been opened for 15 years.  It serves children with dyslexia and other language based learning problems in kindergarten to eighth grade.

The school offers everything from social studies to math, science, physical education and art.  Administrators say small class sizes are a must for student learning.

"We break the skills down in every subject in math, reading, spelling, social studies.  It teaches the kids how to learn in these subjects.  We teach them study skills and how to learn if you are dyslexic," said Beth Maahs-Hoagberg with the Highlands School.

According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, nearly 15 to 20 percent of American students may have dyslexia.  The Highlands School offers an accelerated program to help transition students back into traditional school environments.

Teachers create individualized programs for students to help them learn and succeed.

"Our students can make as much as three years growth in reading in one year.  We also have a summer program for five weeks. We had students make as much as two years growth in five weeks," said Beth Maahs-Hoagberg.

The plan is working for students like Harry.

"I am doing much better with my grades in reading.  I read more books and I can do it all by myself," said Harry Heaps.

Tuition for The Highlands School is a little over $28,000 a year.  Financial Aid and scholarships are available.



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