Matt and Jana Garrett
Parents of a graduate of Karen’s program
As parents, working with Karen gave us confidence and hope as well. It was a scary time for us after John was diagnosed with dyslexia. The tester who evaluated him didn’t give us much in the way of answers, and neither did the school. Karen brought us peace of mind in the midst of an unnerving time, because we could see that this was actually making a difference in the life of our son. He was improving and getting a great education.
Karen was also a critical part of our public school IEP team. We really valued her professional help because we didn’t know how to deal with that process. She was able to guide and prepare us for our IEP meetings, advising us on which questions to ask, which accommodations to request, and even which services to decline. She gave us confidence to push back when the school wasn't giving us what was needed, and she educated us on how to advocate for our son in that environment. In fact, she helped us educate our school about dyslexia! They learned about dyslexia from US, with Karen’s help.
I would recommend Karen to other parents who need an advocate as well as a tutor. She knows how to navigate the system and her expertise is invaluable.
Incidentally, we met Karen through a friend-of-a-friend, when we were preparing to live abroad in China for a year. We were thankful for her remote services, because it allowed us to do John’s tutoring while we were overseas. Then, when we transitioned back to the States, Karen flexed her schedule to accommodate us. We really found the online tutoring to be very conducive to our lifestyle.
We felt so connected with Karen, right from the first interview! Likewise, Karen and John developed a very strong friendship. In the past, tutoring had been a chore for John. But it wasn’t like that with Karen; he really looked forward to his times with her.
Karen did such a great job of developing John’s confidence. When John entered Karen’s program, he really lacked confidence because of his reading struggles and difficulties at school. The encouragement and positivity that Karen poured into him during their lessons made such a difference in his confidence!
We always got a kick out of listening in to John’s sessions with Karen, because she was so engaging and fun! She used a lot of musical techniques and catchy slogans, which John loved. Although John had some challenges paying attention at school, Karen had no trouble keeping his attention!
We also really like that Karen knows how to celebrate! She celebrates her students’ successes in entertaining ways, and it just adds to the fun! It’s a testament to Karen’s approach that her students can have fun and learn at the same time. We like to say that Karen is really good at making “boring things” fun!
Here's an update on John's schooling:
We just met with his teachers last week for his IEP, and his language arts teacher exclaimed, “He’s doing GREAT!” She reported that when she tests the students on Latin roots, John already knows all that! He is so proud of himself for being ahead of the class, because he learned it from Karen! In fact, he’s more knowledgeable than his peers about how words are put together and where they come from. Sometimes he even corrects the teacher!
The confidence our son has gained from these skills helps him in ALL areas of school...and in LIFE.