Imagine a school where your child’s strengths are extended and used to develop and bolster their language arts challenges, where your child receives direct instruction in the reading program they need to thrive.

Two students sitting at a desk across from a literacy instructor.The Sally Borden Program at Friends Academy was established in 2007 to offer a unique educational opportunity for children demonstrating average to superior cognitive abilities with language-based differences. These differences include difficulty acquiring reading, spelling, written expression, math, organizational and/or study skills due to dyslexia or a specific language disability.

Grounded in the firm conviction that each child learns differently — that one size does not fit all — the programmatic offerings of the Sally Borden Program reflect a deeply rooted belief in the need to appropriately support each child in his or her efforts to meet with success in school. It is the school’s belief that LD should stand for “learning diversity” not “learning disability.”

Small classes are a key to providing the direct, individualized instruction and small group experiences that significantly boost student skills. The Sally Borden Program enables this to happen.

Subjects such as art, music, and physical education, as well as recess, field trips, and special events are integrated with the traditional Friends Academy classroom structure and schedule, allowing for a reciprocal exchange of educational programs and teacher interactions. A common, school-wide “activity” period allows all students to work together on projects of their choice.

Children enrolled in the Sally Borden Program who are strong in mathematics are integrated with peers in the corresponding Friends Academy grade. Students in the Friends Academy grades that would benefit from a more hands-on, multi-sensory approach to mathematics can be integrated into the Sally Borden Program.

Offering many unique educational opportunities to its students, the Sally Borden Program is committed to helping students with language-based learning differences to realize their full potential. Through its distinct educational philosophy and curriculum, the program cultivates responsible citizenship, leadership, and respect for others, and inspires a desire for lifelong learning and personal growth.

Learn more about our hands-on curriculum >

Have questions? Browse our Sally Borden Program FAQs >

Friends Academy is one of the few sites to offer Orton-Gillingham teacher training >

Who Was Sally Borden?

Sally BordenIn finding the right name to fit our program, Friends Academy wanted to choose a person who embraced its values and mission, and one who truly understood the needs of all children, particularly those who struggled with learning.

Sally Borden, a beloved teacher, taught at Friends Academy for 30 years until her death from cancer in 2005. She is remembered for her compassion for all children, and as one who embraced the notion that each child comes with a unique range of strengths and weaknesses.

Sally looked at learning differences as learning diversity. She worked with children individually to bring out the best in each. This is exactly the kind of spirit and philosophy that the Sally Borden Program embraces. In Sally’s honor, and integrating her own philosophy of education, the Sally Borden Program at Friends Academy is committed to helping students with language-based learning differences to realize their full potential.