Transformative Teaching and Learning

Supporting Programs That Build a Future Where Every Student Thrives

Blake Bottarini in a blue and white rowing suit.
Blake Bottarini at school as a young boy

Program 1: Structured Literacy Training for Teachers

Blake Memorial Foundation will serve students with learning differences by funding teacher training. Research-based, structured literacy programs are widely considered the best immersive remediation approaches for students with dyslexia and related learning differences. In partnership with Charles Armstrong School, BMF will fund and expedite teacher training in Wilson Reading System® (WRS).

For 55 years, Armstrong has successfully served students with dyslexia and related learning differences, changing the trajectory of their lives. Armstrong is a Wilson® Training Partner with a Wilson® Credentialed Trainer, Cori Maiden, serving as the lead trainer and administrator for the program in California. BMF will identify a school district or consortium of schools where the need for and interest in structured literacy training is high, but resources may be limited.  In 2024, we will be supporting selected teachers in the Catholic Schools of San Mateo County.


(A) 3-Day WRS Introductory Course for up to 30 educators or interested parents/guardians:

  • In-person training (a school/site will need to host) or virtual
  • No prerequisites
  • Goal: a general understanding of structured literacy including rationales and practices

(B) Level 1 WRS Certification Course for 4 educators:

  • WRS Introductory Course completed (prerequisite)
  • Identify, assess, and get approval for a student for one-on-one instruction
  • 65 one-on-one lessons with approved student (in-person)
  • Five teacher/student observations (in-person or virtual)
  • 90 hours of instruction (virtual)
  • 12 months to complete coursework
  • Goal: a proven ability to assist students with learning differences and achieve literacy goals
The Bottarini brothers

Program 2: Blake Scholars at Charles Armstrong School

BMF will provide scholarship funds for Armstrong students who are eligible for tuition assistance and who demonstrate an interest – similar to Blake – in art, design, or engineering. Blake Scholars will be notified of their award and association with Blake, and the school will provide narratives about their progress.

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