Kindergarten Through Third Grade Reading Tutors In Northeast Mississippi
All public schools in the United States have been caught up in educational reform. This has especially been true since the 1980’s. The No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 was a major component in how schools have changed the process of educating students. In response to reform efforts, many schools have relied on their own knowledge to achieve higher test scores. In the last several years, accountability standards have been increasing. Schools are being assessed according to national standards. Because of this, many schools are using different methods of instruction for students at-risk of failing. One method of instruction that many schools have turned to is tutoring. Tutoring has been used in education for a long period of time. The use of tutoring and its effectiveness have been well established in the literature. However, there is not much literature on why tutoring is effective. There is also limited research on the tutor perceptions of the tutoring program. The focus of this study is to examine the use of tutors in Northeast Mississippi school districts. This study explores the grade levels and subjects tutors work in, how the tutoring sessions are organized, and the focus and materials of the tutoring sessions. Additionally, the backgrounds, experiences, training, and perceptions of the tutors regarding the tutoring program are explored. The results of this study suggest that tutors of schools in the Northeast Mississippi districts are utilized in a manner consistent with the research on effective tutoring. Additionally, the findings of this study add to the literature in regards to the organization, focus, and materials of the tutoring sessions. The findings show that some schools in Northeast Mississippi have a good organized tutoring program, but that others do not. Conversely, the focus and materials used in most of the tutoring sessions are consistent with ones shown to be effective in research. The findings also give some insight into tutor perspectives regarding tutoring sessions. Tutor perspectives coincide with research findings that show one-to-one and small group tutoring is effective and that tutors need training, observation, and feedback on tutoring to be most successful.