Elizabeth Cies, Special Education Teacher
“Early on, before we had any instruction on trauma-informed care, it was scary and very stressful because we had students acting out and we didn’t know why. The behavior modifications we were using weren’t working. We felt like we were losing control of the classroom because we’d have one or more students acting out and that would cause a snowball effect. We just couldn’t catch up. Once we started learning about trauma and the different experiences students have and the way that those experiences change their brain development and social-emotional development, it was very enlightening. It was an ‘AH-HA’ moment for the teachers. Its amazing when you can stop, take off your teaching hat, and really look at their heart and all that has been effected from what they’ve experienced – it’s a game changer.”
Student (age 11) reading at 1st grade level
“The work is not too easy, so I’m not bored. But it’s not too hard to make me feel frustrated either.”
Teresa Kummer, Behavioral Specialist
“I think this model [trauma-informed] has changed me as a person. When I think back to my teaching career and as I go through my day-to-day life, I don’t believe I was aware of just how many people might be impacted by trauma and how my interactions – the things I say, the things I do – could be impacting their responses.”
Student (age 16) reading at 2nd/3rd grade level
"I love it! I think it’s the best of the programs we have tried. I like that it put me at the right level, so I’m not having to start at the same level as everyone else doing things that are either too easy or too hard for me. It’s challenging, but at a level that I CAN do, and I feel like it’s helping me learn quickly."
Melanie Myer, Early Childhood Special Education Teacher
"Being trauma-informed has helped me to understand and comprehend some of the things these students are going through and some of the needs that they need met. Now that I am trauma-informed, I know that there are ways in which I can support my students in their daily lives. I can now be that safe person that they can come to rely on."
Dede McCullough, Executive Director of Behavior Support & Consulting Specialist
“I get very excited when I see how a trauma-informed approach is helping students build a higher level of self confidence and success in what they’re doing. I’ve seen how one student in particular has become available to learn. He has come to the realization that we will be there during his most trying times. Because we can help him feel more confident and safe in what he’s doing, he has grown in his educational journey at almost a two per one rate. He is now picking up those skills that he lacked before. There’s no greater reward than helping a child feel safe, comfortable, and confident in their abilities and then watching them grow from that point on.”
Dr. Timothy Shanahan, Education Author & LIteracy Expert
“Altis Reach is an outstanding reading program. We designed it specifically for struggling older readers. Too many remedial programs are really written for younger children, and then are retrofitted for use in the upper grades. That’s not the case with Reach. We looked closely at the most likely reading needs of the struggling preadolescent/adolescent student and then crafted effective motivational instruction consistent with what the research shows to work best. Altis Reach is the smart response to the reading needs of struggling adolescent students.”