More than 700 Roanoke County students using online tutoring

Published: Mar. 14, 2023 at 5:41 PM EDT
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ROANOKE COUNTY, Va. (WDBJ) - Roanoke County Public Schools students have been working with online tutors to improve their education.

With the ‘Just in Time’ program, middle and high school students can log on anytime of the day or week and receive one-on-one tutoring.

“If I need help and my teacher can’t get with me in time, it’s nice knowing that they [the tutors] will always be there for me,” Northside High School senior Allyson Foster said.

Since the program launched last month, students have completed more than 1,500 tutoring sessions.

“You’re able to ask the questions you’re kind of embarrassed to ask in the classroom, you can ask this tutor who is ready to answer any questions you have,” Northside High School senior Carsyn Michaels said. “It makes you feel a little better.”

Roanoke County Public Schools’ director of assessment research explained there has been a nearly 95% positive recommendation rate among students.

“It is probably too early to say whether it’s making meaningful inroads on grades, but I certainly know that it’s making an impact on individual students,” Ben Williams said.

Students receiving individualized help could help bridge some of the pandemic learning gaps.

“Having this for when the students are doing independent work allows us to know that a student can fill in those gaps at any time,” Williams said.

Foster and Michaels explained the only problem with the tutoring program is it didn’t come sooner.

“I think it’ll make all the difference to have it the entire school year,” Michaels said.

A $190,000 grant per year will keep the tutoring program up and running until summer 2025.

“For the cost of about two and a half teachers, we can help about 7,750 students,” Williams said.

In just a month of its running, more than 700 middle and high schoolers are taking advantage of the tutoring.