McNamara: High schoolers can tutor younger students, earn credit

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

Posted by: Jordan Wallace  | Wednesday, August 19, 2020

STATEHOUSE (Aug. 19, 2020) – A new opportunity is available for high school juniors and seniors to fulfill graduation requirements through tutoring younger students, according to State Rep. Wendy McNamara (R-Evansville).

McNamara, a school administrator, 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, McNamara 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.

"Particularly this school year, students could face some additional learning loss and need to lean on a tutor," McNamara said. "There are many Hoosier students who want to pursue a career in education, but have to wait until college to get hands-on experience. This program is an excellent introduction into teaching and I recommend it to any student who may be considering becoming an educator."

To be eligible to participate in this program, McNamara 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.

McNamara 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. Wendy McNamara (R-Evansville) represents House District 76, 
which includes portions of Posey and Vanderburgh counties.

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