Through Houghton Mifflin Harcourt's annual 180 Awards, we are pleased to honor students who overcome challenges to meet and exceed their goals.
The following System 44 students in grades 5–8 were nominated by their teachers and HMH for dramatic improvements in their reading skills over the past year. The three winners each receive $500 along with a set of classroom books.
HMH wishes a sincere congratulations to these reading all-stars who truly deserve recognition for their efforts!
Ian Osborne, Grade 7, Joplin School District, Joplin, Missouri
Grade 7, System 44
“Ian is a determined learner and sets a positive example for others to follow,” says his teacher, Tashena Vickers. “In the past year, he has truly become a leader in his class.”
Ian started sixth grade significantly below his grade level in all academic areas. He received Individualized Education Program (IEP) services for his speech and language challenges – which made him more hesitant to speak – and learning disabilities in reading, writing, and math. “I felt like school was a challenge,” Ian says.
Ian’s school district decided that System 44 was the best route to address his reading needs. Starting with a Lexile® score of 215 at the beginning of sixth grade, Ian missed seven days during his first semester due to anxiety. But in the second semester, Ian became more confident—he started to believe “that he was accepted and cared for,” his teacher said. Ian began volunteering to answer questions, and he missed just one day during the second semester.
Through hard work and dedication, Ian was dismissed from speech services this year. Though some speech challenges remain, his coping skills have drastically improved. Since starting System 44, his reading Lexile® has improved by 496 points, and his IEP team has decided he will begin eighth grade in regular social studies and science classes.
As for the future, Ian said he has an interest in possibly fixing cars – something he enjoys reading about at home!