On May 4, 2023, Nate Casey, Chief Strategy Officer of enterprise tutoring platform Pearl discussed State Tutoring Corps with Ashley Bencan, Chief Operating Officer at New Jersey Tutoring Corps and Lindsey Calhoun, director of the Education Renewal Zone (overseeing the Arkansas Tutoring Corps).

The discussion went in depth into how state based tutoring corps are started, funded, operated and why they are growing in popularity as a community tutoring partnership model across the US.

About Tutor Corps

State tutoring corps offer academic support and mentorship to students. They often focus on those from low-income families or underrepresented communities. Funded by state governments, these programs aim to enhance academic performance with trained tutors, often college students or recent graduates. Offering one-to-one or small-group tutoring in math, reading, and writing, as well as mentorship, these programs have demonstrated positive outcomes in boosting academic achievement and reducing educational disparities nationwide.

About Ashley Bencan

Ashley Bencan has been a coach, a teacher, a student-athlete, a policymaker and, most importantly, a good listener. Working in the education sector is challenging and sometimes isolating work, however through many different opportunities and great colleagues she has found it rewarding.

Ashley attended Rollins College where she was a two-sport athlete and completed her honors psychology thesis on ‘Quality Out of School Time Programming through the Central Florida YMCA.’ When weighing the options of a master’s in public policy at American University or Teach For America, Ashley chose TFA. After five years of teaching middle school ELA and Social Studies in North Philadelphia and earning her master’s from UPENN GSE, Ashley joined the New Jersey Department of Education. Over the course of her time there, she impacted the following areas of policy and practice: Recruitment, Preparation and Recognition; Data Reporting and Visualization, and as the Director of Strategic Operations she led the internal efforts to systematically improve the agency.

About Lindsey Calhoun

Lindsey currently serves as director of the Education Renewal Zone (ERZ) at the University of Arkansas. The office of ERZ is responsible for identifying and developing programs that strengthen local schools and align with current state initiatives.

In 2021, ERZ founded Arkansas Tutoring Corps (ATC). The goal of ATC is to help address the learning loss in students’ grades K-8 in literacy and math. ATC has grown to over 800 active tutors serving students within the state of Arkansas. ATC also provides high school students an opportunity to offer tutoring in literacy to students in grades K-6 within their district.

Who this webinar benefits

    • SEA and LEA officials organizing high-impact tutoring programs
    • School district administrators
    • Teachers of all subjects areas
    • Researchers in education
    • Leaders involved in education philanthropy 
    • University officials with rosters of Education degree-seeking students
    • Tutor programming coordinators (for profit and non-profit)

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