Tutor Training

A major part of the Children’s Dyslexia Centers’ mission, in 15 northern states, is to train teachers how to work with children who have characteristics of dyslexia.  Since 1994 when the first Center was established, over a thousand teachers and other individuals interested in becoming certified Orton-Gillingham tutors have participated in our free training program.

At this time, our program offers free graduate level training for individuals who are interested in receiving initial certification as tutors in the Orton-Gillingham approach.  A minimum of a Bachelor’s degree is required. The certificate training is currently free of charge with nominal material fees. A new class of scholars will begin in the Summer of each year (June-July). Applications, interviews and observations are required to be completed by the end of April to be considered for the training. 

The Free Training for Tutors in Orton-Gillingham Includes:

  • A 70 hour seminar over the course of a year
    • Training in the Characteristics of Dyslexia
    • Use of Elements of the Orton-Gillingham lesson
    • Analysis of the Structure of written language
  • 100 Supervised practicum hours over a school year in conjunction with the seminar
  • 6-10 formal observations with feedback
  • 5 lesson observations of experienced staff
  • Required readings
  • Completed assignments, quizzes and exams
  • Exit portfolio for each student tutored in practicum 

Although the training and training materials are free at this time, there will be nominal costs associated with the training which include, but are not limited to:

  • reading materials
  • grapheme card deck
  • organizational supplies
  • criminal background check
  • Initial Practitioner 1 Certification Fee

Click to find out more information about the Orton-Gillingham Method.

Special Closed Syllables

Lesson Example: special closed syllables.

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We build confidence.

 To apply for free Orton-Gillingham training, please send the following information:

  • Application for MSLE Initial Course Trainee Pages 1-4 (1) 2018
  • A copy of your current resume.
  • Two letters of recommendation from persons knowledgeable about your professional work, dated within the past 2 years.
  • A copy of your Bachelor’s degree diploma or transcript showing the date and type of degree awarded.

Send all information to:

Michele M. Johnson
Children’s Dyslexia Center – Southern Illinois
1549 Frank Scott Parkway West
Belleville, IL 62223

A form allowing a criminal background check must be signed and returned (this is usually done at the time of interview). The cost for this is $41.00.

An in-person interview is required and all paperwork must be completed in order to enroll in a class.


This is a video posted by a Scottish Rite Learning Center in Austin, Texas that will give you an idea of what our training program is like.

Note: It is not exactly the same as our training, but similar enough that you will get a feel for what our training accomplishes. The Belleville Center does not do pyscho-educational evaluations but we do require that level of testing to be considered for acceptance into the center.