Carlow University Receives $350,000 Grant from The Peirce Family Foundation 

January 11, 2024

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Grant Will Fund “The Peirce Dyslexia Program at Carlow University” for Two Years 

Pittsburgh, Pa. – Carlow University has received a $350,000 grant from The Peirce Family Foundation to fund “The Peirce Dyslexia Program at Carlow University” for the next two years. 

“We are so grateful to the Peirce Family Foundation for providing the grant to address dyslexia, a language based processing disorder that affects reading and language-related tasks,” said Dr. Keely Baronak, professor and chair of the Department of Education and Liberal Studies at Carlow University.  “Carlow will use the money to provide after-school tutoring in the Campus Laboratory School (CLS) at Carlow University and three local elementary schools, as well as providing scholarships for both students and aspiring literacy educators.” 

The “Peirce Dyslexia Program at Carlow University” was established in 2022 to address the need to serve children with dyslexia and language-based learning differences. While it began with the CLS literacy program, it does not stop with the Campus Laboratory School. 

This grant will be used to expand the CLS Literacy program that provided on-site and satellite structured literacy after-school tutoring; personalized four-week intensive summer literacy program, which was known as “Camp Carlow,” and student scholarship support for both the afterschool and summer programs. It will also fund teacher scholarships for graduate dyslexia coursework that advances structured literacy instruction and supports Carlow’s Education Department’s four-course dyslexia track. 

“Carlow offers dyslexia and specialized literacy supports as a track in the Reading Specialist Program and as coursework in our early childhood and special education disciplines. Prospective educators in our education programs have real-world field opportunities to put their learning to practice at The Campus Lab School,” said Val Piccini, Program Director for the Reading Specialist Program at Carlow University. “This same education is also extended to practicing educators or community members who wish to gain dyslexia literacy training.” 

Carlow’s graduate-level training, which aligns with the standards set forth by the International Dyslexia Association, teaches structured literacy training to professionals, a deliberate aim to bridge the gap from current educators to new educators entering the workforce. 

“Our goal with this proposal is to scale “The Peirce Dyslexia Program at Carlow University” to a regional dyslexia model,” said Dr. Baronak. 

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