Meg: One Alumna’s Story - Horizon Academy

Meg: One Alumna’s Story

May 16, 2024

Meg: One Alumna’s Story

Before my time at Horizon Academy, my relationship with school was anything but positive; in fact, it was quite intimidating. Reading posed a challenge for me, I vividly recall the frustration of being pulled out of class during reading sessions. In the third grade, I reached a breaking point when I pretended to read, feeling like a failure. Thankfully, I gathered the courage to admit my difficulties to my teacher, leading to a life-changing dyslexia diagnosis following an evaluation.

Despite receiving a dyslexia diagnosis, the school's additional support didn't tackle my core challenges. My fear of school persisted, worsened by teasing and ridicule due to my reading, spelling, and pronunciation difficulties. By seventh grade, my reading skills were stagnant at a third-grade level, leading my family and me to decide to transition to Horizon Academy. 

My experience at Horizon Academy was nothing short of transformative. This specialized school not only helped me change my mindset regarding dyslexia but also remarkably impacted my academic abilities. With dedicated educators and tailored support, I witnessed an incredible shift in my reading skills. In just one year, my reading level skyrocketed from that of a stagnant third-grader to that of an eighth-grader. Although, it wasn’t just about academic growth; it also profoundly influenced my perspective on dyslexia and self-advocacy. Understanding that dyslexia is not merely a challenge but also a unique way of thinking, Horizon Academy emphasized the positives of dyslexia. This shift in perspective was a game-changer for me. It helped me realize that my learning difference was not a limitation but rather a source of strength. By embracing the unique strengths associated with dyslexia, such as creativity and problem-solving abilities, I began to change my mindset regarding my disability. This newfound self-awareness empowered me to navigate educational and life challenges with resilience and confidence, ultimately shaping me into a more confident and capable individual which ultimately prepared me for the next chapter in my educational journey.

Returning to public school after Horizon Academy presented challenges, but the skills and

self-advocacy I developed were invaluable. Armed with knowledge of my learning style and acquired strategies, I confidently addressed challenges. Whether seeking extra teacher support or securing necessary resources, I was better equipped to navigate the educational landscape.

My journey continued beyond that point. I not only achieved the once seemingly unreachable goal of attending college but excelled academically. The foundational skills and resilient mindset I developed helped me thrive, even while studying out of state. I seamlessly transferred to a different college, demonstrating my adaptability and determination. 

Today, I'm on the brink of an exciting career in graphic design, a field I'm passionate about. My experiences have shown me that with the right mindset, support, and determination, any goal is attainable, and I eagerly anticipate a future filled with creativity, achievement, and personal growth.

Meg Morris, Student

Kansas City Art Institute