COLUMBIANA Heartland uses program to help pupils

About 11 of 30 pupils tested will participate in the new program.
COLUMBIANA -- Heartland Christian School officials are launching a program to give some pupils an academic boost.
Betsy LaRiccia, elementary coordinator, is director of Heartland's Discovery Center, a program for pupils identified with learning disabilities.
LaRiccia and other teachers trained in the program will spend about 90 minutes two days a week assisting pupils, she said.
She said it takes about two years of work for the Discovery Center methods to impact pupils' performance.
She said as pupils progress, homework, tests and other classroom work should become easier. She said some pupils enrolled in Discover Center in other schools improved their IQ levels as much as 10 points.
About 11 of 30 Heartland pupils tested will participate this year, she said. Testing was completed last year, and a few pupils participated on a limited basis, she said.
LaRiccia said when the tests show pupils are performing below their IQ levels, their performance is often a result of a learning disability.
She said some pupils may have a comprehension or auditory problem that makes various aspects of learning difficult.
During the Discovery Center sessions, pupils work on those problems, not in specific subject areas.
LaRiccia said the Discovery Center is a National Institute for Learning Disabilities program.
NILD is a national organization that serves Christian schools, she added.

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