As schools, districts, and states work to address student needs following the pandemic, many turned to high-impact tutoring, a research-based approach to providing individualized instruction to students. In fact, thirty-seven percent of public schools reported providing “high-dosage” tutoring on a federal school pulse panel survey in December 2022. In addition, many states have implemented or are exploring policies to increase access to high-impact tutoring. This brief explores the tutoring policy landscape at the state level as of November 2023.
High-impact tutoring is an effective learning intervention that can allow students to gain months or even years of learning over a year of tutoring. Researchers identified key characteristics of high-impact tutoring programs that include the following:
- Delivery by a consistent, well-trained tutor;
- One-on-one or small group sessions of no more than 3;
- High dosage (3-5 sessions per week during the school day);
- Integration with classroom instruction (including high-quality materials that align with classroom curricula); and
- Data-driven instruction to respond to individual student needs.
Promise of State Policy
State-level policy has the potential to be an effective mechanism for expanding access to tutoring. As the primary direct funder of public schools and as a pass-through for federal funds, states have systems in place to channel funds and often, the ability to provide technical support at scale. Leadership from the state level can also boost adoption of effective interventions statewide.
As the recipients of significant federal funding through Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) and authors of recovery plans that include learning acceleration, states can increase awareness of the effectiveness of high-impact tutoring and incentivize districts to design programs that align to best practices. Solidifying the use of high-impact tutoring in policy encourages districts to hire staff, create systems, and incorporate tutoring into their longer-term plans.
While tutoring policies vary widely by state, several themes emerge. Despite the partisan nature of education politics, support for tutoring policies is not correlated with political party affiliation.
- 16 states have passed or are working to pass tutoring-related policies.
- 40 states provide funding for tutoring programs, but only 26 require programs to be aligned with high-impact standards.
- 11 states are partnering with higher-education institutions to help facilitate tutoring policy implementation.
- 12 states provide guidance to help districts implement tutoring programs.
- 15 states provide tutor recruiting or training resources.
These trends reflect a moment in time and continue to evolve as additional evidence informs policy and as funding ebbs and flows. The following table and maps explore these trends in more detail. The Appendix provides more details about our data collection process and about each state’s programs.
States that provide funding for tutoring aligned with high-impact standards
States that provide funding for tutoring not necessarily aligned with high-impact standards
Looking Toward the Future
High-impact tutoring is an effective way to address learning setbacks due to the pandemic — as well as to fill pre-existing learning gaps. Our analysis shows that multiple states are already successfully implementing this intervention.
While states have taken several approaches, the strongest tutoring programs center equity in the tutoring process and use evidence-based strategies, such as integrating tutoring into the school day. As high-impact tutoring policies continue to evolve, we encourage states to collect data and study the impact of their programs to help further the understanding of effective tutoring policy.
Intentional state polices have great potential for supporting implementation of tutoring with quality. Specifically, we encourage states to consider ensuring requirements lead to effective implementation rather than simple compliance. Allowing districts to start small and expand as they build systems may be more effective than requiring full implementation without a ramp-up period. As well, as federal pandemic relief funding expires in 2024, states are encouraged to bring policymakers evidence of successful tutoring programs to advocate for additional tutoring resources to provide this highly effective, intensive, and relationship-based individualized instruction for students in need.
Information Collection Process:
We conducted 28 video interviews with leaders at state education agencies around the country to collect information on state tutoring policies and programs. In a few cases, we used a Google form to collect information from state education agency personnel who were unable to schedule a live interview. In other cases, state contacts could not be reached or were not willing to participate. In these cases, we conducted online research to gather information about tutoring programs. We supplemented the information from the interviews with online research. Links to state tutoring websites are included where they are available.
Alabama does not have statewide tutoring programs at this time. In September of 2022, the state issued a memo providing guidance for high-dosage tutoring products or services, along with a request for information (RFI) regarding high-dosage tutoring. The purpose of the RFI was to create a vetted list of high-dosage tutoring and ancillary supports to assist districts with continued efforts in addressing learning loss and unfinished instruction to improve students’ academic, social, and/or foundational wellness needs. The vetted list can be found here.
Alaska does not have statewide tutoring programs at this time. The Division of Alaska State Libraries, Archives & Museums supports Live Homework Help, an online tutorial program for Alaskan students in grades K-12 and introductory level college students. The program is offered through a contract with Tutor.com that is managed by the Alaska State Library.
Arizona passed ARS §15-241 (K) which created the Arizona Department of Education State Tutoring Fund to provide high-impact tutoring. The funding is available by application, in the form of grants, to parents and guardians of K-12 students in a school that has been assigned a letter grade of D or F. The state provides a list of eligible schools and approved tutoring providers. An additional program, Achievement Tutoring, was announced in September 2023 to provide reading, writing, and math tutoring for students in grades 1-8 who are tested below proficient in those areas on Arizona’s statewide assessment.
Arkansas passed the Learns Act in 2023, in addition to Act 912 of 2021, which created the Arkansas Tutoring Corps. The Tutoring Corps recruits and trains tutors and connects tutors with local education agencies, as well as community organizations, such as Boys and Girls clubs and faith-based groups. The program focuses on K-12 literacy, using ESSER funding to pay tutors stipends ranging between $2,500-3,000. The Learns Act added two additional tutoring programs: a Literacy Tutoring Grant Program provides a $500 grant for supplemental literacy support to eligible students in grades K-3 and a High-Impact Tutoring Program to provide approximately $20m in grants to school districts and charter management organizations to implement high-impact programs in schools.
California does not have statewide tutoring programs at this time. The Expanded Learning Opportunities Program allots funding ($4 billion) for before and after school programming that includes tutoring.
Colorado passed House Bill 21-1234 into law in 2021, which created a high-impact tutoring program to provide grant funding to local education agencies. As defined by the law, this includes school districts, charters and others to create programs to address learning loss from the COVID-19 pandemic. The act itself appropriated $4,981,720 to the Colorado Department of Education to implement the Act, and the program also uses ESSER dollars. The program varies locally, with larger urban districts driving participation and collaborating with higher education institutions and nonprofits. House Bill 21-1234 has a five-year lifespan (expiring July 1, 2026), with grants available by application annually. The department will not implement the program if there is insufficient funding to award program grants. In 2023-24, the program has 37 grantees.
Connecticut implemented a high-dosage tutoring program in April 2023 which allocated $10 million in ESSER funding to local education agencies to implement programming in grades 6-9, focused on math. This program will provide grant funding, by application, for the 2023-2024 school year. In addition to the grant program, the department will provide a short list of tutoring providers, technical assistance, coaching, and participation in a Community of Practice run by an external organization.
Delaware includes high-impact tutoring as a part of the Delaware Strategy to Accelerate Learning. The Delaware Department of Education provided high-impact tutoring seats to Delaware public schools for summer 2021 and the 2021-2022 school year for the most struggling students.
District of Columbia:
Washington, DC created the High-Impact Tutoring Initiative. The program is investing $35 million in scaling and supporting the implementation of high-impact tutoring across DC, with a focus on math and literacy. The funding is available through grants to support local education agencies and tutoring providers. City Tutor DC provides strategic program support through an associated grant.
Florida does not have statewide tutoring programs at this time. However, in February of 2022 House Bill 7011 created the RAISE High School Tutoring program. The program runs a “Train-the-Trainer” model, preparing eligible high school students to tutor K-3 students in literacy. There are state funds associated with the program. In partnership with the Florida Center for Reading Research, the state developed tutoring trainings that are accessible to participating districts.
Using a combination of state funds and federal funds, Georgia’s Department of Education (GaDOE) is investing $6m to partner with AmeriCorps’ Math Corps and Reading Corps to provide tutoring for up to 5,000 students in grades K-8. In addition, GaDOE will launch the GaTutor program for high school students, available through Georgia Virtual Learning. High school students are able to schedule tutoring sessions with tutors during the school day or after school.
Hawaii does not have statewide tutoring programs at this time. However, the UH-Manoa Online Learning Academy hires University of Hawaii at Manoa students to provide math and science tutoring to Hawaii elementary, secondary, and community college students. The tutoring is free, one-on-one, and online.
Idaho does not have statewide tutoring programs at this time. However, Idaho launched the $50 million “Empowering Parents” program in July of 2022, which provides grants of up to $1,000 per student, per year and up to $3,000 per household to families of K-12 students to spend on educational enrichment, including tutoring. The state is also partnering with Schoolhouse.world to provide free and online, small-group tutoring in math for middle and high schools students.
Illinois’s State Board of Education created two pathways for school districts to provide high-impact tutoring. The state designed the Illinois Tutoring Initiative, under the Educational Partnership Act in collaboration with Illinois’s P-20 Council’s development of pillars to support the learning and social-emotional wellbeing of students out of the COVID-19 pandemic. The project is funded by COVID-19 relief funds, and coordinates with seven higher education institutions to work across six regions in the state focused on K-8 math and literacy and high school math. The program provides tutor training, tutor and student matching, data collection, background checks, and marketing and communication.
Illinois’s district-led high-impact tutoring program operates as a grant program, funded by ESSER with 27 districts participating. Local leaders are responsible for ensuring the delivery of the tutoring and reporting student academic outcomes to the state. The focus is on literacy and math, but open to more subjects for high school students. The state provides ongoing support and technical assistance to support the implementation process.
Under Indiana Code 2022, the state allocated $15 million (from ESSER) to high-dosage tutoring. The state created Indiana Learns to implement the tutoring program, focused on 3rd through 8th grade students who are eligible for the federal Free and Reduced Price School Meals program and scored below proficiency in either math or English Language Arts on the ILEARN assessment in 2022. All eligible students will receive a one-time grant of $500. Students may be eligible for up to $1,000 in schools that provide an additional $250 matching grant. Funds are available to be used for math or English Language Arts high-dosage tutoring provided by approved providers.
Iowa does not have statewide tutoring programs at this time.
The Kansas Offer of Recovery administers the Kansas Education Enrichment Program (KEEP), a program which provides qualifying parents and guardians with a $1,000 award per eligible student to pay for a variety of education goods and services that promote educational learning recovery and facilitate academic enrichment opportunities including tutoring by a licensed teacher or a licensed online tutoring business.
Kentucky does not have statewide tutoring programs at this time. However, the state is aware of districts that are partnering with nonprofits (e.g., Zearn, Khan Academy, Match Education) and higher education institutions to implement tutoring programs.
Louisiana launched its Accelerate program in February 2021, which provides guidance and funding to districts to implement in-person, high-impact tutoring programs and summer learning programs, with the goal of addressing COVID-19 learning setbacks. The Accelerate program focuses on math and literacy for all grade levels, and schools that are labeled as “intervention schools” by the state are required to implement the Accelerate program. The state uses $671,000 from a state grant and $455,000 from ESSER to fund this program. The state legislature also passed Act 415 in 2021, establishing the Steve Carter Literacy Tutoring Program which began in fall of 2022. This program gives $1,000 vouchers to families of K-5 students who score below a certain threshold on standardized tests in literacy to spend on literacy tutoring from approved vendors. The state uses $40 million from ESSER to fund this program.
Maine passed Senate Bill 1962 into law in 2022, creating an “Innovative Instruction and Tutoring Grant” program. This legislation provides funding for up to 10 grants, each up to $40,000 to be used by districts during the 2023-2024 school year. High poverty and rural schools are eligible for these grants, and the state requires the tutoring programs to be aligned with evidence-based practices.
Maryland passed House Bill 1372 into law in 2021, creating a “Blueprint for Maryland’s Future.” This legislation provides funding for a tutoring program for students in grades K-3 who score below a certain threshold on standardized tests in literacy and math, with the goals of addressing COVID-19 learning setbacks and providing targeted support to historically underserved students. Districts manage implementation and dosage. The state also established the Maryland Leads grant initiative in 2022, which provides districts with funding and guidance to implement high-impact tutoring programs. The state uses Transitional Supplemental Instruction funding ($680 per eligible student) to fund the Blueprint program, and ESSER ($6,622,658) to fund the Maryland Leads program.
Massachusetts launched the “Early Literacy Supplemental Services Tutoring” program in 2021, in partnership with several tutoring vendors. During the 2021-2022 school year, the program served about 3,000 students in grades K-3 across 16 districts, focusing on students not proficient in reading, with the goal of closing learning gaps in reading. The state uses the Governor’s Emergency Education Relief fund to fund this program. Massachusetts expanded this program to include math tutoring for grades 4 and 8 during the 2023-2024 school year. The state is using $4 million from ESSER to fund the math portion of the program.
Michigan provides Section 98c Learning Loss Grants to districts, which do not have to be but often are used for tutoring. The state uses $52 million from ESSER to fund this program, with the goal of addressing COVID-19 learning setbacks.
In 2023, the state approved $150 million for the MI Kids Back on Track grant fund (MCL388.1623g) which will support tutoring programs provided before school, during school, after school, or during the summer. These funds are designed to address unfinished learning, get students to grade-level academic standards, provide additional academic assistance to students at risk of falling behind their peers, or help high school students prepare for postsecondary education beginning in early 2024.
Minnesota partners with ServeMinnesota to embed reading and math tutors in schools; however, ServeMinnesota, not the state, manages the implementation of the tutoring program. The state launched a grant program in 2021, in which districts could apply for funding up to $200,000 for tutoring programs for K-12 students and summer programs, with the goals of addressing COVID-19 learning setbacks and prioritizing historically underserved groups. The state used $3,185,000 from the federal Coronavirus Relief Fund to fund this program. State legislators introduced Minnesota Senate Bill 2167 in February 2023 with the goal of continuing this tutoring grant program, proposing $20 million in state funding each year for three years. This bill is currently under consideration in the legislature.
Mississippi is scheduled to launch a high-impact tutoring grant program in the 2023-2024 school year. Schools and districts can apply for grants of $75,000 per school or $150,000 per district, per year to implement in-person literacy tutoring for grades K-4, with the goal of addressing COVID-19 learning setbacks. The grant is open to all districts, and the state encourages schools with literacy coaches to apply. Mississippi also provides guidance to districts on implementation of high-impact tutoring programs. Mississippi purchased a statewide contract from Paper for on-demand tutoring in 2022, which is available to all students and districts to use however they see fit. The state uses ESSER and the state literacy budget to fund these programs.
Missouri does not have statewide tutoring programs at this time. However, Missouri passed House Bill 3015 in 2022, which established the “Close the Gap” program. This program provides $1,500 grants to families of K-12 students to spend on educational enrichment activities, including tutoring. This program prioritizes applicants with incomes below 185% of the federal poverty level. The state uses ESSER to fund this program.
Montana does not have statewide tutoring programs at this time. The Montana Office of Public Instruction provides guidance to districts on acceleration and evidence-based instruction, including tutoring.
Nebraska college students will tutor K-12 students virtually in all subjects, with the goals of addressing COVID-19 learning setbacks and encouraging college students to consider a career in teaching as a part of a pilot program beginning in the fall of 2023. The state will fund this program with a $250,000 state innovation grant.
Nevada does not have statewide tutoring programs at this time. Nevada purchased a statewide contract for the online tutoring platform Schoolhouse.world in April 2021 to provide high school math tutoring and SAT preparation.
The state launched a statewide, $4.8 million, 3-year contract for on-demand tutoring with Tutor.com in September 2022. The program is open to all middle and high school students, with the goal of addressing COVID-19 learning setbacks. The “Yes, Every Student” program, which set aside $2.3 million to provide $1,000 scholarships to families to use for tutoring, will sunset this year and will not be renewed due to low participation in the program. The state uses ESSER to fund both of these programs. New Hampshire also launched a contract with Schoolhouse.world to provide opt-in high school math tutoring for students.
New Jersey closed a Request for Qualifications in late April 2023 for its tutoring program, in which districts will apply for grants and partner with approved service providers, including New Jersey Tutoring Corps and New Jersey Partnership for Student Success, to implement high-impact tutoring beginning during the 2023-2024 school year. This program focuses on students in grades 3 and 4 (but can include grades PK-8) in literacy and math during the school day or after school, with the goals of addressing COVID-19 learning setbacks and prioritizing historically underserved schools. The state is using ESSER and $17 million from the Governor’s Emergency Education Relief fund to fund tutoring efforts. New Jersey legislators introduced Senate Bill 3569 in February 2023 and its equivalent Assembly Bill 4843 in November 2022 to establish a matching grant program for districts to implement high-impact tutoring programs. In the summer of 2023, the Murphy administration announced that the fiscal year 2024 budget dedicates $35 million in federal COVID-19 relief funding to support districts in offering high-impact tutoring interventions for students disproportionately affected by the pandemic.
New Mexico launched a virtual high-impact tutoring program in January 2023, serving Algebra I students and specifically targeting students in need of Algebra I credit recovery, rural schools, and indigenous schools. The state plans to expand the high-impact tutoring program to 6th grade math and early literacy in late 2023. The state also has contracts with Saga Education and Lexia Learning Systems to reduce the cost of middle grades math and literacy tutoring for districts; districts manage implementation and dosage of these programs in their schools. New Mexico recently terminated a statewide contract for on-demand tutoring. The state uses ESSER to fund these programs, which collectively cost about $1.4 million.
New York does not have statewide tutoring programs at this time. Governor Hochul proposed a $250 million high-impact tutoring program for grades 3-8 in reading and math to be funded by the state’s Foundation Aid as a part of her 2024 budget. The adopted budget includes a total of $629 million in targeted grants to address learning loss from the shutdown of in-person learning through activities such as summer enrichment and comprehensive after-school programs.
North Carolina launched a partnership with North Carolina Education Corps in September 2020 to recruit, train, and support tutors who work in person as part-time employees within schools. During the 2022-2023 school year, the program served 29 schools/districts with over 400 tutors providing services to students in grades K-5 in literacy; NC Education Corps is planning to pilot a math tutoring program, as well. The program continues to serve 29 partners for the 2023-24 school year. The state uses ESSER ($13.5 million), the governor’s office ($726,000), and philanthropic donations to fund this program.
North Dakota has agreements with Edmentum’s Exact Path, Waterford Upstart, and Schoolhouse.world, and students and districts have the option to use these platforms. The state identified high-impact tutoring as a strategy for learning recovery. North Dakota also expanded its investment in Reading Corps and Math Corps, high-impact tutoring providers that use AmeriCorps tutors. The state also offers training for tutors. The state uses ESSER to fund these programs.
Ohio’s Department of Education allocates funding to numerous tutoring initiatives throughout the state to accelerate student learning, and the governor recently proposed additional funding for the budget. Notable programs include partnerships with the Boys and Girls Clubs for students who reside in rural areas, and Learning Aid Ohio for students with 504s and IEPs. In addition, the Ohio Department of Higher Education awarded $14 million in Statewide Mathematics and Literacy Tutoring Grants to Ohio colleges and universities with teacher preparation or education programs planning to create or expand mathematics and literacy tutoring programs for Ohio’s K-12 students in one-on-one or small-group settings.
The Oklahoma State Department of Education utilized ESSER funding to provide high-dosage tutoring in mathematics to students in grades 7-9. The program currently serves 1,000 students and has 410 tutors who are educators. Sessions are held three times per week for 50 minutes, and take place in the fall for 9 weeks and in the spring for 12 weeks. Students who participate in the program have higher participation rates in their math classes.
In June 2023, the Oregon Legislature passed the Early Literacy Success Initiative. Three of the four grant programs within this initiative include high-impact tutoring in early literacy. The Oregon Department of Education will administer non-competitive, application-based, annual grant grants to eligible LEAs. For the Early Literacy Success School District grants, $90 million for the 2023-25 biennium funded through the Statewide Education Initiatives Account. Funding for Tribal Grants and Community grants will be determined by the legislature. High-impact tutoring is identified as a purpose of the Tribal and Community grants and is an allowable use of the School District grants.
Pennsylvania does not have statewide tutoring programs at this time.
Rhode Island created a task force in February of 2021 that identified high-impact tutoring as a prioritized strategy for accelerating student learning. The state partnered with Amplify Education to provide workshops, communities of practice, and coaching support to districts wanting to implement tutoring programs. Additionally, the state has a partnership with Schoolhouse.world that offers free virtual tutoring, focused on math and SAT and AP readiness. The state has provided a list of approved tutoring vendors for districts to use. Districts are using ESSER funding to expand high-impact tutoring opportunities for students.
South Carolina does not have statewide tutoring programs at this time. However, the South Carolina State Library utilized its funding in 2020 to purchase a subscription to Tutor.com and internet hotspots for K-12 students. In 2022, the state Department of Education paid for another subscription with ESSER funding. The website provides on-demand tutoring for coursework and homework.
South Dakota provides virtual high-impact tutoring to K-12 students in math, science, English Language Arts, and social studies. The program, the Dakota Dreams Online Tutoring Program, is funded through ESSER and has served 331 students. Students from Northern State University and Black Hills State University serve as tutors in the program. Students in grades 1-8 can also participate in Tutor Tracks, designed to firm up their foundations in reading, grammar or math. For each session, tutors bring guided lesson plans; sessions are held for 30 minutes, twice a week, over a seven-week period.
Tennessee passed House Bill 7004, the Tennessee Learning Loss Remediation and Student Acceleration Act, in 2021. This legislation created a funding formula that factors high-dosage tutoring for elementary school-aged children through its program, Tennessee Accelerating Literacy and Learning Corps (TN ALL Corps) ($200 million). Students receive tutoring 2-3 times per work in small groups for math and English Language Arts. In 2021, the program served 150,000 students and continues to grow. This program also provides community grants to five community-based organizations to deliver high-impact tutoring to 18,000 students across the state.
Notably, Tennessee has incorporated high-impact tutoring into its funding formula. The state includes $8 million to offer literacy tutoring to 4th graders who need more support ($500 for each student who did not pass the 3rd grade state literacy assessment).
Texas was the first state to require high-impact tutoring for certain students with the passage of HB 4545 in the summer of 2021. Any student who does not pass the STAAR test in grades 3–8 or STAAR end-of-course assessments must either be assigned a classroom teacher who is a certified master, exemplary, or recognized teacher or receive supplemental instruction (tutoring) before or after school, or embedded in the school day. Eligible students must receive 30 hours of tutoring one-on-one or in groups no larger than three. In June 2023, Texas passed a follow-up bill, HB 1416, that limited tutoring requirements to reading and math, increased the maximum tutor student ratio to 1:4, and reduced the minimum hours requirement from 30 to 15 hours for some students, among other changes.
The state provides tutoring support for districts including a tutoring toolkit, a series of webinars focusing on challenging issues (i.e., scheduling), and tutor training through the Education Service Centers across the state. TEA also subsidizes some tutoring providers for districts and provides a vetted list of providers.
Utah does not have statewide tutoring programs at this time.
Vermont does not have statewide tutoring programs at this time.
In September 2023, Governor Youngkin announced the All In Tutoring for all school divisions. This reading and math tutoring is targeted toward students in grades 3-8 who are “at risk” or “not proficient” based on state-wide assessments. Sessions are to be held for a total of 3-5 hours each week for 18 weeks for “at risk” students and 36 weeks for “not proficient” students. Tutoring is to be in-person and staffed by trained tutors and focused on grade-level content. Group sizes may be up to 10 students, but the state recommends groups of no more than five students receiving tutoring at a time with the remaining students engaged in practice with software.
Virginia Learns, an organization in partnership with the state Department of Education, also provides high-impact tutoring to students through its program, Accelerate Virginia. Accelerate Virginia helps students progress in the areas of math and literacy. Students meet individually or in small groups for a span of 10-12 weeks and receive instruction from educators, college students, and community members.
Washington State does not have statewide tutoring programs at this time.
West Virginia does not have statewide tutoring programs at this time.
Wisconsin does not have a statewide tutoring program; however, one-to-one tutoring by a licensed teacher is an allowable activity under the Achievement Gap Reduction Program established in the 2015-16 school year. Schools may provide data-informed, one-to-one tutoring to students who are struggling with reading or mathematics or both subjects. Tutoring shall be provided during regular school hours by a licensed teacher using an evidence-based instructional program.
Wyoming does not have statewide tutoring programs at this time.
Special thanks to Shahum Ajmal, Jade Roman, and Hannan Rosenstei for their work on this project as part of their Policy-in-Action Project at Brown University’s Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs.