All East Aurora students now eligible for free tutoring
By Kalyn Belsha email@example.com October 22, 2013 10:20AM
Updated: November 24, 2013 6:21AM
AURORA — All East Aurora School District students are now eligible for free tutoring services in math and reading, thanks to a district decision to provide all students with free breakfast and lunch.
“This is the first year that all students and all families who want to apply for the tutoring services are, in fact, eligible,” Michele Brown, who directs the district’s secondary programs, told the school board Monday night.
In the past, students had to meet federal income requirements to be eligible for free or reduced price meals, which qualified them for the tutoring services. Earlier this year, the district opted to provide those meals to all students, regardless of income, which opened up the tutoring to all students.
The tutoring services are paid for with federal grant money, known as Title I funding. Students can receive tutoring before or after school in their homes, at community-based organizations or online.
In the next two weeks, district parents and guardians will receive a letter in English and Spanish explaining the services being offered and a form to register their child.
The district also will host a tutoring fair on Dec. 7 at East Aurora High School’s fieldhouse from 3 to 7 p.m. where families can talk to providers and ask questions about their services.
The event is being held at the same time and place as Las Posadas, an annual celebration of the story of Mary and Joseph traveling to Bethlehem.
Parents and guardians must return their registration forms by Dec. 20 to be considered for services. The provider then will notify families if they’ve been selected.
In the past students typically have received about 30 hours each of tutoring. Last school year, 682 students district wide received that amount.
While the district hopes to be able to provide tutoring for every child who wants extra help, it’s not clear yet if the district will be able to serve all students who sign up, Brown said.
Last year, all students who wanted tutoring received services, but this year it will depend on how many students fill out applications if the district can serve all children with the federal funding it has.
If more students apply than there is available funding, the district will develop a waiting list, Brown wrote in her presentation document.
Tutoring providers are approved by the state and go through background checks before they can work with children. This year East Aurora students have 43 providers to choose from and can indicate their top three choices on the registration form.
Tutoring services will start during East Aurora’s second semester, which begins Jan. 21.