December 15, 2009 // Franchising.com // Claudia Porter founded the Porter Academy in 2000 to fill a critical gap in the educational community. Porter Academy is dedicated to the education of children with atypical learning styles who have not been successful in a traditional classroom setting. The curriculum is for children in Pre-K through 5th grade (ages 4-1/2 - 12 years old).
Porter Academy's occupational therapy program is extensive as they administer individualized, standardized tests, which measure fine and gross motor skills and handwriting. They also test to identify sensory integration differences along with language and physical education assessments.
Ms. Porter, who has an MA in Speech/Language Pathology, is an educator and a licensed Speech/Language Pathologist, working with students who have learning differences.
The organization recently witnessed a major hurdle as a result of the economy.
Helping them cross this hurdle is Rick Crain, Business and Executive Coach at the world's leading business and executive coaching firm, ActionCOACH.
Coach Crain recently enlisted Porter Academy into ActionCOACH's massive global pro bono business coaching initiative for the not-for-profit and charitable sectors of the economy. ActionCOACH's founder and Chairman Brad Sugars, launched Coaching for a Cause to help charities and non-profits raise at least an additional $2.5 million in funds and donations from October 1, 2009 through March 31, 2010.
The combined value of the program is $1.8 million.
Coach Crain came into contact with this organization through one of his business clients, whose children attend Porter Academy.
"I am passionate about this cause because they are helping children with learning differences that need specialized education to realize their potential," Crain said. "This makes them very unique from traditional educational systems that do not have the resources or expertise, so children are often lumped together in crowded classrooms at various degrees of learning capabilities."
According to Crain, the results at Porter Academy are outstanding in the numbers of children that have gone on to high school and plan to enter college.
"Porter Academy puts children through extensive testing to assess their special needs, and then crafts a customized learning environment -much like a coaching organization," he said. "It would be a grave mistake to inappropriately assess your child's needs to succeed in school as it would for a coach or consultant to do the same in your business or career."
Crain believes there is a huge need for this school and others like it to expand and grow, so our children get the best chance to reach their full potential.
"Our coaching values match Porter's perfectly," he added. Most recently, the Home Depot accepted Porter Academy into their We Build CommUnity program.
"They donated $3,000 in supplies and sent manpower to come and spruce up our school. They painted, planted, power washed and spread 854 bags of mulch," she said. And then help came in the form of business and executive coaching, which will help the fundraising efforts required to complete their building project and provide systems, which will be beneficial in the long-run.
Porter is excited to have been selected to participate in the Coaching for a Cause global initiative.
"I am thankful for the opportunity and hope that ActionCOACH will continue to help other organizations like ours," she said.
Coaching for a Cause is an innovative, new program from ActionCOACH, the world's number one business and executive coaching firm that makes pro-bono coaching available to charities and non-profits worldwide.