Dr. Cheryl Orcutt has served as the Executive Director of Windy Row Learning Center since its foundation in 2003. In 2014 she received her doctorate in Educational Leadership, with an emphasis on curriculum and planning in reading and math programs. "In education," she said recently, "you go to seminars and workshops that help you envision the future--you are always furthering your education and made aware of the importance of keeping current with professional developments in reading and math."
The reading and math tutoring that Windy Row provides has a broad impact on children's lives, Cheryl explained. "It's about problem solving. Difficulties in problem solving are often problems with language, figuring out 'what is the question?' Children need to be able to problem solve in all sorts of ways."
However, she emphasizes that not all problems with reading and math are long-term. "You need to keep an eye on it," she suggested, "because if it is a problem, then the earlier it is addressed the better. Problems with reading can show up before kindergarten when children have difficulty if you ask them to show you four fingers. By first grade they're expected to do addition and subtraction and if they are still lagging in grade two, they." Symptoms of a reading challenge can show up kindergarten, with difficulty in saying the alphabet in order. Both math and reading disabilities may also show up as difficulty in following oral instructions that other children seem able to follow.
Cheryl's thesis focused on collaboration within schools between regular and special education in addressing reading challenges. "In the best case scenario," she said, "there is a seamless system of regular and special education and tutoring, where everyone collaborates to help the child."
At Windy Row, Cheryl supervises 4 tutors and also tutors children herself. She speaks with prospective parents about their concerns for their children and handles enrollment.
In addition she runs the summer program at Windy Row (which is accepting applications now) and also teaches a tutor training course.
Dr. Orcutt can be reached by info [at] windyrow.org (emailing) or phoning (603-924-7198) Windy Row.