I drove onto campus this morning and was greeted by a picture of Steve Jobs in recognition of National Dyslexia Awareness Day. It seems that the man whose company asked consumers to “Think Different,” also happened to be dyslexic.
Two thoughts came to mind. The first was how fortunate we are to have the CrossWalk Program on our campus. It’s the only one in the Valley that provides an integrated daily Orton-Gillingham based instruction for students with language-based learning differences. My second thought was how blessed we are to have our CrossWalk students who “think different.” Truly our school is a better place for the efforts of our CrossWalk staff and the students whom they teach.
One of those students, Riley Hoff ’20, gave a presentation this morning on her and her fellow CrossWalk students’ experiences with dyslexia: what it means for them and what they wish other students would know about it when interacting with them. She was extraordinarily well received and an encore performance has been ordered up for the middle school.
Riley’s address to our students is also an example of how we do things differently at North Cross. When asked to compare our academic program with local public schools, we often retreat to the realm of AP scores and college placements, but the real difference is much greater. We are a community of learners, not just a school. Riley was teaching our Upper School in much the same way our students learned about Japan earlier this year from Alice Ying ’22. We read books together, go to museums together, and discuss global events together. Thinking differently is not so out of the ordinary here.
Christian J. Proctor, PhD
Dr. Proctor is the ninth Head of School at North Cross and has served as such since 2011. He has more than 30 years of experience in education. He has served as headmaster at Porter-Gaud School in Charleston, South Carolina, St. Martin’s Episcopal School in Metairie, Louisiana, Grace Episcopal School in Monroe, Louisiana, and as Interim Headmaster at Wesley Academy in Houston, Texas. In each location, Dr. Proctor’s tenure was marked by creativity, innovation, and school growth.