The M.A. Rooney Foundation provides professional learning support that focuses on increasing student achievement.  We work directly with school leaders to identify needs and next steps for success.  Collaboratively, we design professional development opportunities that are engaging, motivating and relevant to district goals.


Our Model

Reading is a complex process that involves supporting students to develop skills in three primary areas of learning:

  • automatic word recognition (decoding)

  • language development (vocabulary and background knowledge)

  • strategic knowledge (comprehension skills and strategies)

While all three areas must be supported, the M.A. Rooney Foundation’s primary mission is to ensure that educators have the training and resources they need to support students in developing grade-level decoding skills. Our approach in reaching that goal is to utilize the Orton-Gillingham approach.


Prevention is Key

For many students learning to read is unnatural and poses great frustration. Historically these students struggle for many years before they are identified and even then, many may not have access to an adult that is able to understand how to best support them.


We believe failure is not an option for students. Research on the importance of screening and early identification of students to identify reading problems argues that prevention and early remediation are most effective in improving the trajectory for students. Our model supports a whole-class OG approach as part of a daily literacy framework in Kindergarten through Second Grade. This preventative approach provides a solid foundation for all students, reduces the number of students needing interventions, and minimizes the instructional gap of those students that are at-risk.


In addition to utilizing a whole-class preventative approach, we support the early identification of students that are at risk of developing reading difficulty through universal screening. Informal diagnostic assessments are administered to identify error patterns for data-driven instruction.