BUFFALO, N.Y. -- The Center for Literacy and Reading
Instruction, affiliated with the University at Buffalo's Graduate
School of Education and dedicated to helping children struggling
with reading or writing, is accepting applications for the fall
The center, known as CLaRI, supports children, their parents and
their teachers through evaluation, instruction and planning in
traditional and digital literacy skills. The center is committed to
helping children of all socioeconomic, linguistic, cultural,
religious, racial or ethnic backgrounds improve their writing and
Students accepted into the program attend either the UB center
in 17 Baldy Hall on UB's North (Amherst) Campus during the school
year, or one of several affiliated school sites throughout Erie
County during the summer months.
"There are many places where parents may go for an assessment of
what is wrong with their child," says Debra Dechert, associate
director of CLaRI. "But the UB reading center is one of those few
places that knows the child must learn to read, presumes that the
child will learn to read and assumes a responsibility for teaching
that child to read."
Students often arrive two or three grade levels below their
current grade in reading and writing ability, according to Dechert.
Center teachers, all of whom are graduate students in UB's
literacy-specialist master's degree in education program, identify
students' needs in reading and writing through diagnostic
evaluation. The center's teachers work with UB faculty to determine
specific reading and writing skills that need to be improved,
provide instruction and prepare a plan to continue improvement
after students leave the center.
The program also helps parents and professionals by providing
them with written reports that indicate each child's specific
strengths and areas in need of further development, as well as
recommendations for instruction tailored to that child's
individualized needs in literacy.
Students who complete the center's program often improve from
one to three grade levels before leaving the center. The center's
sessions are scheduled twice a week for a 12-week instructional
program. Each session begins at 4:30 p.m. and concludes at 5:45
p.m., and involves a combination of one-to-one remediation as well
as some small group reading/writing instruction.
A parent whose son, Ben, attended the center for instructional
services described the program's benefits in this way:
"We are so grateful that the center was there for Ben and the
other kids. I know that if we didn't get the help Ben needed right
away, it would have affected him adversely for the rest of his
life. Yet if a child is given the tools he or she needs, they can
blossom into a confident child who is willing to work to
The fee for the diagnostic evaluation is $200 and $450 for the
12-week instructional program. Fund-raising efforts are underway to
provide scholarship for those families unable to pay the fees for
diagnostic and/or instructional services.
For more information and an application, please contact Debra
Dechert at (716) 645-2455, ext. 1016.
The University at Buffalo is a premier research-intensive
public university, a flagship institution in the State University
of New York system and its largest and most comprehensive campus.
UB's more than 28,000 students pursue their academic interests
through more than 300 undergraduate, graduate and professional
degree programs. Founded in 1846, the University at Buffalo is a
member of the Association of American Universities.