Lorri Wilke, M.Ed., PCET, SL/DS

Creating Lifelong Learners

Success Stories




Educational Therapy Success Stories



   Victoria's Story

     Victoria began working with Lorri Wilke in November of her junior year of high school.  She struggled with various memory deficits, handwriting, and math.    Within weeks, there was marked improvement in Victoria's handwriting.  Five months later, Victoria took the Iowa Test of Basic Skills, which she has done every April since 5th grade.  While the therapist certainly expected to see improvement in her scores due to 5 months of educational therapy, she was startled by the outstanding results.  Victoria's math composite score had increased a full 22 points and her overall composite score had increased by 15 points- and after only 5 months of therapy.  She also gained considerably in Science and Social Studies.  Her Language scores, which had previously been good, increased as well, as had her confidence in her academic ability.  Victoria's family intends to continue her educational therapy through the rest of high school, expecting that she will be more than prepared to enter a 4 year university upon high school graduation.  The only regret is that they had not known about educational therapy sooner.  




8th Grader

     This current 8th grade student came to our school as a 3rd grader after being told by her private school that they could not help her with her academic difficulties.  Through testing it was revealed that she had severe dyslexia and dysgraphia.  She had a full scale WISC score of 88, with PR, WM and PS all clustered in the low average range.  Only her VC was average.  Our administration believed that our Discovery Program (educational therapy) could benefit this young student, so she was prayerfully admitted into 2nd grade in our rigorous, classical, Christian school. Throughout the next 5 years this young lady and her family persevered through 2 years of intense, one-on-one Orton-Gillingham tutoring and dysgraphia assistance and 5 years of educational therapy.  The result . . . drum roll please . . . a full scale WISC of 102 and WJ results all in the average range!  THAT IS A 14 POINT JUMP IN HER IQ SCORE!! 

     That is LIFE CHANGING!  Truly, I am so thankful for perseverance on her family’s part, thankful for a school that endeavors to say “yes” to students that struggle, despite the fact that it is costly, difficult, and inconvenient, and thankful for God’s work through NILD to the minds and hearts of the therapists who invested in this young lady.




  Click on the link below for an 8 minute video clip with interviews with two former educational therapy students, an educational therapist, and the parent of a former struggling learner.

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 Dannika's Story

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  Jack's Story

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Benjamin's Story
The following account is written by an educational therapy student, after several years of therapy. 
Jerreth McLaughlin (Benjamin's mother) from Tahlequah,OK writes: 
"I thought Benjamin's essay might encourage someone out there.  It was a LONG haul.  800 people apply to Oklahoma State University every year for veterinary medicine.  Only 80 people are accepted.  Now imagine the chances of someone with his background getting in and surviving it!  It would never have happened if it weren't for NILD."
Editor's note:  Portions of Jarreth's son's college entrance essay below tells the story.

Learning disabled...I remember the label making my insides seethe with indignation.  I felt like I was stupid, and condemned never to fit in. Having a learning disability is not quite the same as being stupid (at age four I was told I had an IQ of 136), but the rest of the world does not always make that distinction, and my parents and teachers were concerned that I might be "mentally slow."

School was pain in its purist form. No matter how hard I tried numbers and letters made no sense to me.  The specialists who tested me told my mother that I would probably never be a prolific reader, would struggle in math,  that my work would be fraught with mistakes and I would be a "big eraser user"... I felt like a failure.

The next few years were academic and social agony.  At first may parents thought I could "tough my way through" with a little extra help from them. But most of the predictions about me came true.  It was about that time that my mother found out about NILD educational therapy.  I began therapy twice a week, and my mother continued working with me an added half hour per day, as well. She soon decided to take the training herself, and became an educational therapist.  I can still hear the strange words "medulla oblongata" and "cerebral cortex" on the cassettes my mother would listen to.

I continued to struggle until the fourth grade. I had broken the reading barrier like a flood through a card village. For the first time in my memory my scores came back with many subjects on grade level, except for the ones I had not completed due to time limits.  It was suggested that I get a time accommodation, but my mother refused. She told me that it was better to rise to meet the challenge if at all possible.

Rise we did! Over the next four years we gradually thinned the number of subjects that were below grade level.  The final goal was achieved at the end of the eighth grade, when all of my scores ranked me in the top 1% nationwide!

Then I knew that there was very little, indeed, that I could not achieve if I set myself to a task.  Now, as  I pursue a career in veterinary medicine, I still live with a few reminders of my disabilities, but I have a much higher tenacity level than most people. Part inherent in my person, but more forged in the heat of my mother forcing me to do my therapy.  Some days as I regain focus in the middle of a lecture just in time to hear a strange word like "medulla oblongata", I think back to where I first heard those words, and I think of my mother. It is then I remember that my being here is her victory!

By Benjamin McLaughlin
From Educational Therapy Student to 30-Something Businessman
Two weeks ago I had the pleasure of being in the audience of a 30-something adult who was giving a short presentation regarding his seven years of NILD educational therapy during childhood.  What an inspiring story!  He gave the analogy that his "car" ran, the "engine" worked, but he just needed bridges built to help him get from "here" to "there."  He credited NILD educational therapy with creating these necessary bridges.  From the devastation of social and academic failure to straight As and a college degree, this now successful businessman, husband, and father of two exemplifies why we are so passionate about our work at NILD.  What we do really does make a huge difference in our students' lives.  As Kathy Hopkins (NILD director) often says, "NILD is a rescue operation."  I've heard many similar testimonies in my three years since joining NILD and never cease to get goose bumps.  Thank you for continuing to support NILD and enabling us to help you build more and better bridges for your students.