Lasting Legacy

Jack Aronson has lived in Ferndale his whole life, and is a proud graduate of Ferndale High School. A former restaurateur and founder of Garden Fresh Gourmet, Jack and his wife Annette love this town and are committed to helping our community & our children achieve a better future. As part of that commitment, the Aronsons have made an incredible investment in Ferndale Public Schools over the past two years to help improve literacy.

Continue Reading about the Aronsons...

At Ferndale High School, the Aronson family has generously donated more than $100,000 and countless hours of their time to improve literacy. These efforts are strongly supported by Carol Jackson, who serves as an assistant to the Aronson’s. Carol has been instrumental in providing coordination of daily activities for the READ 180 program, even assisting in fundraising efforts to
ensure the longevity of the program at Ferndale High School. Their support has enabled Ferndale Schools to hire a full-time reading specialist and purchase flexible learning furniture, computers, and licenses for READ 180 curriculum. READ 180 is a researched-based reading tool that blends reading comprehension, academic vocabulary and writing skills for students. This year, thanks to the Aronsons, Ferndale High School was able to provide reading intervention and tutoring for over 70 students.

The Aronsons’ commitment is much more than just financial. In addition to being involved in the reading program at FHS, they regularly take the students on culturally diverse field trips and bring lunch to the students so they can talk and get to know each other. They are committed to establishing personal relationships with our students and school community and providing positive role models for our students.

All of this is made possible due to the Aronsons’ success with Garden Fresh Gourmet, a locally-operated company committed to the health and sustainability of the people they serve throughout its lifetime. Having grown the company into one of the premier deli supply companies in North America with over 400 employees, the Aronsons sold Garden Fresh to the Campbell’s Soup Company in 2015 for $231 million, on the condition that Campbell’s commit to keeping manufacturing operations in Ferndale and further invest in the local community. As part of this commitment to our community, Campbell’s has founded the Healthy Communities Metro Detroit program, which will infuse $125,000 into Ferndale Elementary Schools and Detroit Public Schools to fund school gardens, mobile food pantries, nutrition education and cooking classes. The Aronsons have since founded the Great Lakes High-Pressure Processing (HPP) Food Innovation Center. HPP exponentially extends the shelf life of fresh foods without using artificial preservatives. The innovation center will help other companies within the Great Lakes region extend the same commitment to freshness that Garden Fresh has become known for across a national market, further expanding the Aronson family legacy as champions of a better future.

Jack and Annette’s engagement goes well beyond Ferndale. He serves on the board of Beyond Basics (an organization promoting youth literacy), as well as the national board of the Salvation Army. Through their foundation, Jack and Annette are significant contributors to Boys and Girls Clubs of South Oakland County, as well as other charitable causes focusing on bettering the lives of children and young adults.

Without their continued support, Ferndale Schools would not be able to run the intervention courses we do. On behalf of the entire Ferndale Schools family, we wish to say thank you to the Aronson family.


The READ 180 program targets individual students’ needs
and accommodates instruction and practice in the specified
areas. It uses multiple methods to reach the students’
goals: whole group instruction, small group instruction, computer activities, and a silent reading time. Students are selected for the program based on test scores and previous year’s grades.


High-pressure processing (HPP), also called pascalization,
is a pasteurization technique that uses cold-water pressure to make foods safer and stay fresher longer, thus eliminating the need for artificial preservatives. The process involves
placing sealed food in a vessel and hitting it with a high level of cold water pressure (about 8700 pounds of it), which inactivates bacteria, virus, yeasts, molds, and parasites.

Read 180

from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (hmhco.com/products/read-180)

Multi-Tiered Systems of Support

READ 180 Universal can help educators meet the needs of students in both general and special education through a Multi-Tiered Systems of Supports (MTSS) approach, which is a systematic framework for allocating instructional services and resources in response to students’ individual academic and behavioral needs. An effective MTSS framework includes a multi-tiered prevention model, research-based programs, universal screening and progress monitoring, decision making and accountability, implementation benchmarks, professional development and collaboration between school and family.

Monitored Growth

Data assessments and reporting tools on HMH Teacher Central provide a variety of resources to help teachers understand individual student needs, group students, target key skills and monitor growth.

Success Stories

For more evidence of Read 180's efficacy, check out some videos and reports from actual students who have benefited from the system across the country.