Kay Thomson, owner/director of Dreamcatcher Direct Instruction Centers, has over 28 years of experience in education through teaching, consulting, and running an educational center. She also co-created an emancipation program that Boulder County Social Services adopted for teens she fostered that were never going to be returned to their biological parents.
She began her teaching career in a self-contained program for gang-involved high school students in the Chicago area. In 1985 she moved to Colorado, and remained teaching and working with severe emotionally disturbed and probation youth for the next 21 years, both in and out of public schools. She ran a 22 bed residential treatment center, before taking on the task of creating a “probation school” for adjudicated youth in the Poudre School District. She remained there for 10 years, and the program was so successful, she was asked to present at the International Conference for Behavioral Disorders in Aspen, Co. In 1998 she bought the Dreamcatcher Direct Instruction Center in Loveland, Co. In July, 2000, she bought the center in Berthoud, and has owned and operated the Centers since. In 2003, and again in 2010, she gained approval to be an SES provider for the State of Colorado. She began serving academically at-risk eligible SES students in the school year 2008-2009, and in less than 3 years, she has expanded to serving 10 districts.
Over the past 8 years Kay has been consulting with schools by training and coaching teachers in Direct Instruction and classroom management. She was instrumental in helping a school district in Nebraska receive the highest reading scores on the first ever state-wide reading test in 2009-2010. Similarly, in Reno, NV, her efforts resulted in helping a school progress from having never made AYP, to becoming the highest Title 1 and Reading First school in all of Washoe County. Her formal education includes a B.S. in Special Education from Western Illinois University, a M.A. in Agency Counseling from University of Northern Colorado, and master level licensure in Special Education in Colorado. She has taken numerous post graduate level courses in coaching, curriculum implementation, and classroom management strategies.