About Orton Gillingham Online Academy

We, at the Orton Gillingham Online Academy (OGOA), believe that all people have the right to reach their full potential. The OGOA exists to serve children, adolescents, and adults with Dyslexia. We offer parents and teachers resources to assist with teaching our English language. We are dedicated and committed to present to you tools that will enhance the teaching/learning venue. It is our goal to maintain a standard of excellence for the practice of the Orton Gillingham Approach.  We make it our mission to reach students across the globe.

Our Orton Gillingham trainers have years of successful teaching experience and offer training opportunities based on Orton Gillingham principles.

Our distinguished staff is dedicated to providing an ongoing resource to those who teach individuals with Dyslexia.

Distinguished Staff

Marisa Bernard, Orton Gillingham Online Academy Executive Director

Marisa Bernard, Executive Director

Marisa is a dynamic educator with several years of successful teaching experience. She has been married for 31 years and has raised her 2 adult children. She has her Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology with a focus in Cognition & Learning and has her Master’s Degree in Special Education. She is also a highly qualified Elementary Education Teacher. Marisa is a Reading Specialist and has worked on staff at the Dyslexia Institute of Indiana as both an educator and trainer of the Orton Gillingham Approach. She has also taught Special Education in a public school setting. Marisa also completed her Educational Leadership coursework at Ball State University and serves the OGOA as Executive Director. She has 20 years of teaching/OG experience and has remediated countless numbers of students on grade level by using research based strategies such as the Orton Gillingham Approach. Marisa is a professional member of the International Dyslexia Association.

Marisa received a grant through the Lilly Foundation & traveled to the highlands of Ecuador to teach English, using the Orton Gillingham Approach, to the indigenous children. She also learned organic farming from her host family & brought this knowledge back to her home school to begin a school wide organic garden for the special needs students to cultivate & maintain.

Marisa also travelled to New York City the summer of 2009 to volunteer at New Life Fellowship Church in Queens. While there, she assisted with their summer children’s educational program & food drive.

Marisa & her husband have welcomed many homeless & downtrodden adolescents into their home. Marisa makes it her mission to assist children who do not fit inside the conventional box and to send them on their way feeling productive, successful, & well-equipped to lead a fruitful life. Marisa looks forward to serving this Academy as director, trainer, and webinar hostess.


Brittany Monro, Orton Gillingham Online Academy Chief Operating Officer

Brittany is an OGOA certified Orton-Gillingham tutor and trainer. She has a bachelor’s degree in psychology with a focus in cognition and learning, and a master’s degree in clinical mental health counseling with a focus in childhood disorders. She works with children who have Dyslexia and other cognitive disabilities. It is her passion to assist children with Dyslexia in finding optimal success.

Brittany has provided tutoring services for low-income families, and has volunteered to work with the homeless youth in Nevada. Currently, Brittany serves the Orton Gillingham Online Academy as chief operating officer, onsite and online training facilitator, product line developer, and practicum extension supervisor.


Lynn Givens, Course Facilitator & Developer

Lynn Givens, Course Facilitator & Developer

Lynn has been a teacher of struggling readers and a teacher educator for over 35 years. She served as Director of Intervention at the Florida Center for Reading Research where she was involved in providing intervention training and professional development for teachers throughout Florida. She is currently teaching undergraduate reading courses at FSU’s School of Teacher Education, teaching and facilitating a practicum for teachers of struggling readers, and acting as instructor/facilitator for online teacher endorsement courses in reading. Trained in the Orton-Gillingham Approach, she spent eight years at the Schenck School in Atlanta, which provided her with a firm foundation in teaching students with Dyslexia and other struggling readers. Her goal has always been to provide high-quality, explicit instruction to close the gaps for students who are having reading difficulties and to instruct teachers on how to do this as well.


Mary Binnion, Practicum Supervisor

Mary is an outstanding educator with her graduate degree and many years of successful teaching experience. While teaching for many years in a large urban system, she realized that she had not been properly trained to teach reading to anyone, especially children with reading difficulties. Although Mary had earned an elementary and a secondary life teaching license, troubled readers were not learning to read in her classroom. Taking additional classes in special education did not remedy the situation. Given the opportunity to learn the Orton-Gillingham Approach changed everything for her, but, more importantly, for her students. She came back to the classroom and revamped her reading class. She asked for and was granted the lowest performing readers from the third, fourth and fifth grades. Student test scores soared. Those children learned to read. Mary is certified through the International Dyslexia Association and was given the International Dyslexia Association (IDA) Indiana Branch Teacher of the Year award in 2000. She is the co-founder of Decoding Dyslexia-IN. A former classroom teacher and administrator for 35 + years in the Indianapolis Public School system, Mary often shares that she didn’t really know how to teach reading until her 28th year in the classroom when she begin her Orton-Gillingham training. She has been a trainer for the Dyslexia Institute of Indiana and currently serves as President of the Indiana Branch of the International Dyslexia Association. Mary somehow finds time to be a special education advocate, where she helps parents work with schools to meet the needs of their child, many of whom are SLD (dyslexic) students.


Angela Warren, Practicum Supervisor

Angela is a wife and mother of three children. She has worked in Early Childhood Education for over 18 years. She founded and directed an Early Childhood Education program at her church in 2009. This program received the highest ratings in Kindergarten Readiness scores for the duration of the program. When it became evident that two of her children were struggling in school, Angela knew that she needed to be able to help her own children with their education. It took over two years to be able to understand why her children were not learning at the same rate as their peers. After extensive neurological testing, her two children were diagnosed with Dyslexia. The severity of the Dyslexia ranges from mild to severe. The Orton Gillingham Approach was the recommended method by the neuropsychologist. To her dismay, there were no certified Orton Gillingham practitioners in her area. She wanted to get her children the help they needed and found the Orton Gillingham Online Academy. 

The Orton Gillingham Online Academy has been a huge blessing to her family. After completing the Basic Language Course, Angela went on to obtain her certification through the Academy’s Practicum Extension Course. She is currently an OGOA Certified Orton Gillingham Practitioner, and has since completed her Orton Gillingham Advanced Language training. Angela has also completed a year-long apprenticeship at the Orton Gillingham Online Academy for the Practicum Extension Course, and is now a Practicum Supervisor.  It was through the easy accessibility of having an online academy like this one that has led her to not only remediate her own two children with Dyslexia, but also other children in her area who struggle with learning differences. 


Helen Finley, Course Co-Facilitator

Helen is a highly qualified educational professional with multiple years experience in training teachers all over the United States in the Orton-Gillingham approach. Prior experience she spent many years as a Title I Reading Specialist in grades Kindergarten through fifth grades. She is dedicated to helping all students learn to read.
Educational studies have resulted in a Doctorate degree in Curriculum and Administration from Lindenwood University, an Education Specialist degree in Administration from William Woods University, a Master’s of Science degree in Special Reading from Missouri State University, a Master’s of Science degree in Music Education from Missouri State University, and a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Music Education from Missouri State University. 


Sheri Edwards, Course Co-Facilitator


Sheri was a registered nurse for many years before becoming a stay-at-home mom when her daughter was born.  She has first hand experience dealing with (and homeschooling) a dyslexic child.  She became involved with the Orton- Gillingham Approach when her daughter was diagnosed with dyslexia in 2013 and tutoring was recommended.  She was fascinated with this method of teaching after observing her daughter’s successes during tutoring sessions.  She is excited to be part of the OGOA team and is determined that all educators should know and use this method to teach children language and reading skills.  


JT Wanner, Graphic Artist

JT Wanner, Graphic Designer

JT serves as the graphic designer for our product line as well as our marketing materials ([email protected]). We are thrilled to have him as a part of our team!



Our Orton Gillingham trainers facilitate our courses and we welcome you to visit our Virtual Classroom!