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Straight 'A' Student Finds Way to Improve

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Mandy Nagy

As a sixth grader at Hudson Middle School in Pasco County, Mandy Nagy was excited about entering into to her new school. In her first two years at Hudson, Mandy excelled as a straight "A" student with perfect attendance while enrolled in advanced math and band. However, after taking an Accelerated Reading Exam while in the seventh grade, Mandy soon learn she failed the test. The exam was designed to identify the level of skill in reading comprehension. "I read the paragraphs, but couldn't answer the questions correctly at the end," said Mandy. When Mandy's mother found out that her daughter failed the test, she couldn't believe it. "I didn't understand how a straight "A" student could struggle with reading comprehension," said Melissa Nagy.

Hudson Middle's reading specialist Vicky Ramey suggested that Mandy stay after school to participate in a reading tutoring program called "Terrific T's". The program is held every Tuesday and Thursday in the school's media center. Students struggling with reading are paired with volunteers from the community for one-on-one tutoring.

Mandy's struggle with reading comprehension was identified, and a specific curriculum was designed to strengthen her weakness in that area. Mandy committed several weeks into the program. "She really wanted to improve in this area," said Ramey. As a result, Mandy's reading comprehension skills improved and she passed the Accelerated Reading Exam with a score of over 80% of 100. Her mother was thrilled. "I think it's great that a student who is doing so well in so many areas can improve in reading comprehension," she said. As an eighth grader today, Mandy is looking forward to attending Hudson High School next year and wants to go to college to study accounting. "I am really good in math," she said.