Promising Practice: Academic Support for All Students, All the Time header image


Research shows that the most important factor in college success is taking a rigorous high school curriculum. Low-income students enroll and progress in college at much higher rates when they graduate high school academically prepared. To meet this critical need, GEAR UP schools provide accessible academic support to help all students during the school day and beyond.

Powers High School: Tutoring Lab

Powers High School has a tutoring lab that is open after school from 3:30-4:30 staffed by a math teacher and three student tutors to assist students.  A second room has one teacher to provide more one-on-one tutoring with no more than three students. Students with a D or an F in math have mandatory tutoring lab time assigned to them. Once a student has a C they are excused from attending tutoring lab. However, all students may attend and work in the tutoring lab. A healthy snack is also provided before the students start working.

The tutoring lab has grown from just the students required to be there to anywhere between 5-10 students utilizing the quiet space to work and receive help. 

"This is an excellent time for students to receive personal help and assistance from our top student tutors and also have a teacher available to assist them," said Ellen Baldwin, GEAR UP Coordinator at Powers High School.

Stanfield Secondary School: Academic Friday

Stanfield Secondary School operates on a four-day week but is available for Academic Fridays for students to receive extra help from teachers, staff and Honor Society students. Students who are not meeting proficiency (70% or higher) in their classes are required to attend and other students are welcome to access the school for academic purposes. The school checks grades on Tuesdays and then notifies students and parents that are not meeting proficiency.

"We get an average of about 40 students," said Cindy Salinas, College Coordinator. "It works for a lot of students and [is] going strong."

Camas Valley Charter School: Tutorial Period

Camas Valley Charter School built a forty minute tutorial/guide period into the normal school week. Every Monday the students report to their grade level advisors to review grades and other grade specific information. The students and advisor reviews the grade report and then work together to decide the best placement for the week. If a student has a D/F in one or more class they will be assigned to the content teacher that would be the most beneficial to the student that week.  The students who have all C’s or better are allowed to choose between two enrichment classes for the week. 

Weekly grade checks and placement in a tutorial class helps to keep students on top of their grades so they can quickly address any deficiencies. 

Patrick Lee, superintendent and principal thinks the program seems to provide strong support for students who need teacher help and who need a slight push to keep caught up. "Students who don’t normally have time to do homework or can’t stay after school to get help from teachers have that opportunity during the school day by taking advantage of the tutorial class."