Since the onslaught of the pandemic, students across the nation have been struggling to keep up in the classroom. Both external and internal factors have influenced the increasing levels of learning loss in America. From trying to acclimate to new learning environments to managing new education styles, teachers and students have found themselves falling behind, according to EdSurge.
Administrators have been working to find solutions to bring their learners up to speed, one of which is beefing up tutoring programs in the school. But how is it being done, and is it an effective method? Let’s explore more!
Putting coronavirus relief money to work
During the pandemic, the Biden administration launched the American Rescue Plan, which aimed at providing some solace to those who needed it the most, including public school districts. The relief totaled $122 billion. In a March 2021 press release, Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona said, “These funds from the American Rescue Plan and the extraordinary steps the Department is taking to get these resources to states quickly will allow schools to invest in mitigation strategies to get students back in the classroom and stay there, and address the many impacts this pandemic has had on students — especially those disproportionately impacted by the pandemic.”
One way American school districts use that money is by bolstering their tutoring programs. The goal is not only to provide a way for students to catch up but also to give tired and overworked teachers some much-needed assistance.
Many schools are approaching this strategy as a more permanent solution than just a temporary one. Some are even campaigning to establish a national, federally funded tutoring infrastructure that will continue after the end of the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to the Poverty Action Lab, consistent evidence shows how tutoring programs can benefit students who have fallen behind and boost their learning. Their analysis reveals that “tutoring programs consistently lead to significant improvements in learning outcomes for students. In addition, the large effect sizes observed across programs identify tutoring as one of the most effective educational tools available.”
Many school districts see the value of having an integration tutoring program for hybrid, remote and in-person learners. ChalkBeat.org provides several different large-scale examples:
- New Mexico: Recruiting 500 “educator fellows” to provide small-group tutoring in their state.
- Chicago, Illinois: Recruiting 850 math and reading tutors until 2024.
- Denver, Colorado: Gary Community Ventures, as an act of philanthropy, “is looking to hire 500 reading and math tutors to work in the city and nearby suburban schools.”
Despite the apparent consensus that tutoring benefits all involved, implementation is not as easy as it may seem. Without trying to hire more tutors, there is already a teacher/educator shortage. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were 575,000 fewer local and state education employees in October 2021 than in February 2020. In addition, the state report found that 65,000 public educators left the industry between September and October of 2021.
The ability of each unique school district to obtain high-quality education support in the form of tutors is variable across the nation. Some schools have access to more resources than others, which will impact the reality of implementing tutoring services.
To learn more about how to supplement learning loss, contact Agile Education Marketing today.