This feature is part of the National Alliance's 2021 Back to School Month campaign
Gates School in South Carolina is committed to empowering students with dyslexia and other reading differences to succeed. The school will open on August 18, welcoming grades one through five and will add one grade per year over the next four years. In addition to helping students grow academically, the school is focused on ensuring each student develops a positive self-image. The National Alliance talked to school leaders about their vision for the school.
What led you to open a charter school?
There was a demonstrated need in the Lowcountry for a school that understands and can teach students with dyslexia. With the influx of people to the Charleston area, our schools have not been able to meet the needs of students with reading challenges.
What makes Gates School unique?
We have a unique mission to provide an exceptional, evidence-based, multi-sensory education for students with dyslexia to open the gates to their academic potential in an environment that empowers students to develop a positive and socially conscious self-image.
What are your plans to incorporate student voice into your school?
The 2021-22 school year is our first year and as such we have many ways to include students in shaping the school-from the decision of mascot, the development of traditions and much more.
Is there anything else you would like us to know about your charter school?
Everything we do is researched based and done purposefully. With a strong commitment to meeting the unmet needs of so many struggling readers, the Gates School aspires to unlock the potential of each student with dyslexia and serve as a regional model charter school that is a beacon to educators and parents as to what can be accomplished through dedication, service, and a supportive educational foundation. From the very beginning, we knew that we needed to have a centrally located campus so that we can be a resource to all communities in the Lowcountry.
Brittnee Exum is the manager of communications and marketing at the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools.