Gutwein: High schoolers can tutor younger students, earn credit

Lawmaker says new option could help fill in gaps created by e-learning

Posted by: Josh DeFonce  | Monday, August 17, 2020 9:00 am

STATEHOUSE (Aug. 17, 2020) – As schools begin the new academic year, an opportunity to fulfill graduation requirements is available to high school juniors and seniors to tutor younger students, according to State Rep. Douglas Gutwein (R-Francesville).

Gutwein said students can experience some form of learning loss over summer break, meaning they do not retain some of the lessons they learned the previous school year, but most are typically able to relearn these lessons quickly. However, because students participated in remote- or e-learning due to COVID-19, a recent NWEA report estimates some children could begin the 2020-2021 school year up to nearly a full grade level behind their peers in some subject areas. To help bridge this gap, Gutwein said schools can implement the Indiana Department of Education's newly developed Indiana Tutoring Fellowship, which will fulfill the Service-Based Learning Experience under Graduation Pathway Requirement #2.

"Big changes to learning, like abruptly switching to e-learning last spring, can have a lasting impact on students," Gutwein said. "Many students will begin the new school year further behind than previous years. High school juniors and seniors can help younger kids who need extra help catch up and stay on track."

To be eligible to participate in this program, Gutwein said students must be a high school junior or senior, maintain at least a 3.0 GPA and be in good behavioral standing. The IDOE recommends tutoring sessions take place virtually, but if students are permitted to meet face-to-face, social distancing must be followed. Tutors will work with students in kindergarten through eighth grade.

Gutwein supported the 2017 law creating Indiana's graduation pathways, which allows students to pursue opportunities that best meet their education and career goals. 

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State Rep. Douglas Gutwein (R-Francesville) represents House District 16, which
includes all of Pulaski County and portions of Fulton, Jasper, Newton and Starke counties.
here for a high-resolution photo of Gutwein.