Learning Centers

Academic Support For Student Success

Summit Christian Academy’s offers two special services to students who need additional instruction, accommodations, or therapy for learning differences: the elementary SOAR Center and the secondary Student Success Center. Each features a specialist to work with students and the tools needed to progress learning and achieve academic success.

Elementary SOAR Center

The SOAR Center provides an opportunity for elementary students to Sharpen, Overcome, Achieve, and Rise in academic skills with the assistance of a teacher specialized in reading and math intervention as well as dyslexia therapy. Instruction it tailored to each student’s needs and takes place in a small group setting during set school-day sessions. 

Who Is The SOAR Center For?

  • Students with an IEP, 504 plan, or a diagnosed learning difference or disability  
  • Students with a Dyslexia diagnosis
  • Students who perform in the bottom 35% of NWEA assessment data in math and/or reading and would benefit from small group instruction to bridge the learning gap
  • Students identified by teachers as needing extra academic support to be successful in the classroom

SOAR Center Services

Specialized Dyslexia Intervention

We understand the unique challenges that students with dyslexia may face, which is why our staff includes a dyslexia specialist. Through an Orton Gillingham approach and evidence-based strategies, we help students with dyslexia develop the necessary skills to become confident and proficient readers.

IEP/504 Services & Support

Our interventionist is equipped to implement and monitor many Individual Education Plans in order to support students who have learning disabilities or delays. Strategies employed range from modifications to curriculum, individualized instructional methods, and accommodations for the completion of academic work and tests among other strategies depending on student need.

Reading Intervention

Reading intervention is tailored to each student’s needs, whether that be letter naming, decoding, fluency, or comprehension, and is delivered using techniques that take into consideration each student’s learning style. Multi-sensory techniques are used to teach decoding skills, all in a small group setting. SCA’s interventionist collaborates with parents, teachers and the student, sharing reading assessments and educational plans to equip students to meet and/or exceed grade level reading standards.

Math Intervention

Math intervention is designed to provide instruction to students who need extra support to master important math concepts ranging from number sense to problem-solving and specific skills related to counting, number operations, measurement, geometry, proportional relationships, expressions and equations, and more. Manipulatives are often used to provide concrete models of abstract math concepts, all in a small group setting.

Personalized Academic Planning & Monitoring

Specialists analyze NWEA assessment data, Oral Reading Fluency Assessments, and other student performance data together with teacher recommendations to develop lesson plans, resources, and activities to target individual reading and math intervention needs. Student progress is regularly monitored to assess the effectiveness of interventions and adjust instruction as needed. In addition, SCA classroom teachers and LISD special education teachers collaborate through monthly service plans to ensure that students continue to grow academically and progress toward meeting their IEP goals.

Parents and caregivers are communicated with through conferences, phone calls, and emails to provide updates on students’ progress, discuss intervention plans, and offer suggestions for supporting learning at home.

Natalie Lark, SOAR Center Director

Natalie Lark serves as the Director of the SOAR Center and provides student services. She has an impressive resume that includes a degree in multidisciplinary studies with a specialization in mathematics from Texas Tech University. In addition, Natalie has through continued education specialized training through the Rawson Saunders Institute’s Certified Academic Language Practitioner program. She holds a State of Texas Contained Classroom, Mathematics and ESL Supplemental teacher certifications, and her experience includes teaching in public and private school settings. 

Secondary Student Success Center

The Student Success Center supports students in grades 6 – 12. Through the center students can receive support with classwork, get additional instruction, practice and test in alternative ways, work on organizational and executive functioning skills. 

Who Is The Student Success Center For?

  • Students who have been diagnosed with a learning difference or disability and have an IEP.  
  • Students that teachers identify that need extra academic support to be successful in the classroom.
  • Students whose families desire extra support for their student

Student Success Center Services

  • One-on-one or small group instruction by the SSC instructional specialist
  • Instruction in strategies for completing work, taking tests and staying organized
  • Advocacy with teachers
  • Student-specific goal setting, tracking and reporting 
  • An alternative environment for studying and completing work
  • Oral administration of assessment questions, as need for understanding
  • Executive functioning skills support
  • Use of a calculator for math
  • Classroom accommodations (See SSC Pricing & Sign-Up Form for a complete list.)

Erin Mwalwanda, Student Success Center Specialist

Erin Mwalwanda is the specialist serving secondary students in the Student Success Center. She has a Master of Arts in Teaching from George Washington University and a Bachelor of Science from Longwood University. “I love helping students understand that they are unique and discover how they have been created to question and learn,” says Ms. Mwalwanda.