T: (800) 801-1954
F: (607) 273-8995
Ithaca Office (HQ)
95 Brown Rd, Suite 201
Ithaca, NY 14850
Sound Reading believes that reading success is an attainable goal for every child. We reach this goal through differentiated instruction, and stand firm in our personal commitment to students, parents, and teachers. We will act with integrity and honesty as we continue to build trust in a community of readers.
Sound Reading Solutions was founded by Bruce Howlett. For over a decade, Howlett worked with a member of the National Academy of Science at Cornell University in biochemical and molecular research. In preparation for teaching graduate students, Howlett took science education courses, which led to a teaching position at a school for emotionally-disturbed teens. None of the students read well enough to use high school level texts. Hoping to understand how these students might learn to read Howlett became certified as a special education teacher.
As he studied, Howlett was shocked by the flimsy research foundation underlying reading instruction. After working as a middle school special education teacher, it became apparent to him that students who didn’t learn to read in elementary school were treated as second class students. Upon transferring to an elementary school in the Fall of 1997, Howlett was promptly handed 24 third and fourth graders whose reading skills were low level at best—despite instruction in some of the most well-known reading methods in the field.
Nothing in Mr. Howlett’s training had prepared him for these students. The disconnect between research and practice was frightening. Howlett spent the next year reading over 100 papers and developing working relationships with speech-language pathologists (SLPs). The following school year, Howlett shared 18 students with SLP Nancy Williams, who helped him apply methods from the speech-language-hearing field into reading remediation. Howlett and Williams placed their information on a Web site and were flooded with requests and suggestions for new methods. They hand-assembled these materials and gave them away, until the copy machine at Howlett’s school broke down and he paid a printer to make the copies. This began Sound Reading Solutions in 1998.
Why You Can Trust Us
- Sound Reading was the first entirely new method of reading education in decades; and the first one to focus on auditory processing, a critical component of the “no child left behind” program.
- Thousands of children have been tutored by volunteers with Costco Wholesale Volunteer Programs, where we have been the preferred learn-to-read partner for nearly 10 years.
- We have an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau.
- We have been approved by the New York City Department of Education to provide the city’s public schools with online reading software through April 2021.