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'Just thrilled' | Guilford County Schools to receive $2 million for tutoring program

The district launched the initiative to help students recover from learning loss due to the pandemic. After seeing success, the program is growing.

GUILFORD COUNTY, N.C. — The tutoring program for Guilford County Schools is growing.

Thursday, United States Representative Kathy Manning and Superintendent Dr. Sharon Contreras announced the district will be receiving $2 million to help expand the program.

"When the COVID-19 pandemic began, we saw early that we would need to enhance and expand our efforts to eliminate barriers to students receiving a high-quality education," said Dr. Contreras. 

The program was launched to help students recover from learning loss during the pandemic.

The district created a high dosage, high-intensity tutoring model. Dr. Contreras said it garnered national attention. 

“We know that individual and small-group tutoring can have a major impact on a child’s academic progress,” says Superintendent Sharon Contreras. “Expanding our tutoring program will allow us to reach students who have suffered learning loss over the past two years.”

Dr. Contreras said right now the program has 564 tutors that serve more than 3,900 students. As of last week, students received more than 33,000 hours of tutoring so far.

The money will go toward bringing more graduate assistants on board, expanding tutoring subject offerings, and ultimately serving more students.

"A preliminary report from the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction shows that this pandemic had a negative impact on all students for all grades for almost every subject and the report makes clear North Carolina students have struggled with learning loss caused by school closures and lack of access to reliable internet connection," said Rep. Manning. 

Manning said the $2 million comes from the omnibus government funding bill President Joe Biden signed earlier this month. 

"These tutors are a mix of graduate assistants from UNCG, NCAT, GCS high school students, GCS teachers and community partners, so we've got a wide and diverse group of community tutors," said Manning.

Dr. Contreras and Manning said the funding allows more students in Guilford County to have access to the one-on-one educational support that will really make a difference.

Also at the announcement Thursday was Dr. Faith Freeman. She is the Director of STEM and oversees the tutoring initiative with the district. 

She explained high dosage tutoring means students will meet with their tutor for at least 30 minutes to an hour, depending on their age, at least 3 times a week.

The program started out offering math. With this funding, it will be able to expand literacy and science subjects. 

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