Higher Education Institution
Intensive, high-dose tutoring can boost early reading skills, even in a virtual format, according to a new experimental study.
Researchers from the National Student Support Accelerator at Stanford University tracked the reading progress of about 2,000 K-2 students in a dozen Texas charter schools. Half of the students were randomly assigned to attend class normally, while half received intensive remote tutoring for part of the school day, in small groups, through the nonprofit group OnYourMark, which serves K-2 students in seven states.
According to the U.S. Department of Education’s research arm, high-dose tutoring is the most effective—though often the most expensive.
The National Student Support Accelerator, a Stanford University center that studies effective tutoring, finds that effective high-dose tutoring programs require:
- Tutoring integrated into the school day to increase tutor-teacher coordination and avoid transportation or time problems for students.
- Targeting students based on academic need rather than requiring parents to opt into services.
- Budgeting services for at least three to five days a week for extended periods of time.
- Differentiated tutoring based on particular student needs and skills.
- Data-gathering and progress-monitoring, particularly when schools work with outside tutoring providers.
With research showing that far fewer students took advantage of online tutoring than districts expected, the outcomes-based model is one way to ensure districts use public funds wisely. “In education, we can pay for things a long time before we realize no children are participating in it,” Miller said.
Districts across the nation use Multi-Tiered Systems of Support (MTSS) to target appropriate supports for each student. High-impact tutoring is the most effective research-backed academic support – consistently demonstrating from six months to over two years of learning gains for students across grade levels and content areas in a single year of tutoring.
Districts that have chosen to integrate high-impact tutoring with MTSS are finding that embedding this highly effective support into the fabric of their schools improves student outcomes, reduces implementation challenges, improves instructional coherence, and streamlines operations.
Many districts sought to provide students with high-impact tutoring in response to pandemic-induced learning needs. Some started earlier than others, and we aimed to learn from the experiences of the early adopters to help inform a smoother implementation among those beginning the process later. During the 2021-22 school year, we partnered with school districts, tutoring providers, and quarterback organizations that support implementation across districts to learn from their efforts in implementing tutoring.
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