Literacy Can’t Wait: Saving Literacy Through the IMSE Foundation Scholarship Program

Leader in literacy professional development starts nonprofit foundation to offer scholarships for educators to learn proven methods to teach reading

Southfield, Mich., May 1, 2024 — IMSE, the leading provider of structured literacy professional development, today announced the launch of the IMSE Foundation to provide more educators with the tools they need to fight the literacy crisis.  

Only one-third of U.S. students can read proficiently, and nearly 70% of fourth graders do not read at grade level. Yet in contrast, research shows that students who reach grade-level proficiency in reading by third grade are four times more likely to graduate and succeed in their careers. With nearly every state in the nation passing legislation, guidelines, or policies on reading and literacy, giving educators access to science-backed approaches is key to making progress.

“We have no time to waste — the literacy crisis has ramifications for society that go beyond schools and we must break down barriers to access proven strategies that increase our impact to ensure every child learns to read,” said Jeanne Jeup, co-founder and CEO of IMSE. “Through the IMSE Foundation, we are poised to do our part to empower educators to have the tools they need to teach reading and help students succeed.”

For the past 30 years, IMSE has been the leading source of professional development and support for educators teaching literacy. IMSE training is based in the science of reading, drawing from research in cognition, linguistics, and neuroscience. Over 300,000 educators have taken IMSE training, with over 1,200 becoming IMSE-Certified educators after completing a rigorous 12-month practicum. Now, with the foundation as the nonprofit arm of IMSE, educators have the opportunity to receive scholarships for access to high-quality professional development that works:

  • Cucamonga Local School District in California saw the number of kindergarteners reading at or above grade level rise from 25 percent to 50 percent.
  • Sixth graders from Washington Local School District in Ohio doubled or tripled their scores on the DIBELS assessment.
  • Mountain Mahogany Community School in New Mexico saw a 25 percent improvement in state assessments over four years.

“The IMSE Training was the best training I have ever received in my 21 years of teaching — my students now leave my classroom with a strong foundation in early literacy skills,” said JoLynn Aldinger, first-grade teacher at Galileo STEM Academy in Meridian, Idaho. “Nothing compares to my students’ confidence when they realize they have what it takes to read and spell hard words.”

The IMSE Foundation is donor-funded and aims to provide teachers access to training and tools that are proven to help students overcome reading gaps and reach grade level. Donations received go toward training teachers in proven methods and fighting the literacy crisis, which is fully preventable.

“We believe every child in every zip code deserves to read, and that starts with giving educators what they need,” said Robin Zikmund, Dyslexia Advocate and Community Engagement Manager of IMSE.

Applications are now being accepted for the first IMSE Foundation scholarship, which will be awarded to a teacher at the end of May. The IMSE Foundation is committed to giving teachers the tools and training they need to make a difference.

To learn more about the IMSE Foundation and to apply for the scholarship, visit:

Click here to donate. Your donation makes all the difference in children receiving effective reading instruction and a path toward literacy success.

About IMSE

IMSE, founded by educators for educators, is the leading provider of structured literacy solutions that leverage the best of Orton-Gillingham and structured literacy, rooted in the science of reading to promote literacy. An education pioneer, IMSE has nearly 30 years of experience applying and innovating the science of reading to empower educators through curriculum, professional development, and personal support. IMSE’s unmatched training and classroom programs enable a practical approach to teaching reading that furthers equity in literacy learning and has helped millions of students across the country achieve measurable growth. For more information about IMSE, visit:



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