The Achieve Tutoring Program

By maryellen March 30, 2021

Great Things About South Orange Maplewood Schools – The Achieve Foundation’s Tutoring Program 
by Mary Ellen Dawkins

Last time I wrote about the many different classes offered at Columbia High School. It can be tempting to sign up for some really great and rigorous classes! Once a student realizes they are having difficulty in a particular subject, it’s very easy for them to receive additional help. The Achieve Foundation of South Orange and Maplewood (“Achieve”) is a non-profit educational foundation that exists to enhance the educational experience of district public education students. Besides providing grants and other programs to teachers and students, Achieve runs an amazing free tutoring service. (Note: I am the board Treasurer for the foundation!)

Amy Forman has been running the Tutoring Program on an in-person basis for several years. Volunteer tutors are matched with students requesting assistance. Students from any district school can request assistance (teachers sometimes suggest Achieve), so the tutoring ranges from elementary to high school students. Tutor volunteers include other students, parents, community members, Seton Hall University students, etc. Volunteers often assist more than one student.

At the start of the pandemic, Amy pivoted the program to become a fully remote via Zoom. In doing so, Achieve is still able to meet the needs of the district’s students. In fact, the number of both volunteers and students requesting tutoring has grown – it’s easier to commit to tutoring sessions when you don’t have to physically get somewhere. There are about 400 volunteers currently working with about the same number of students.

Amy just reported to us that students currently working with tutors for one subject are now requesting help in other subjects – meaning they are seeing results. The foundation continually gets great feedback on the program. We are always looking for additional volunteers – click here if you would like to become an Achieve tutor!