As is stated in McKinsey & Company’s recent article, “The US education system was not built to deal with extended shutdowns like those imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic.” The authors go on to state: “Even more troubling is the context: the persistent achievement disparities across income levels and between white students and students of Black and Hispanic heritage. School shutdowns could not only cause disproportionate learning losses for these students—compounding existing gaps—but also lead more of them to drop out. This could have long-term effects on these children’s long-term economic well-being and on the US economy as a whole.”
Many other noteworthy publishers, such as The New York Times, The Washington Post, the74million.org, and edutopia.org, give arguments and evidence that predict steep learning losses due to COVID school closures will widen the achievement gap.
While it is impossible for one person or one company to solve this immense problem, there are opportunities to make a major difference.
WorldWise Tutoring has created a “Student Sponsorship” program so that individuals, families, and organizations can make affordable sponsorships to fund the academic support of students from low-income neighborhoods during these challenging times. The funds will pay for the private tutors who will work with the students nominated by schools and organizations that can attest to the students’ dedication and promise. During the sessions, the tutors will focus on assisting the student with academics and test prep, while also teaching them the underlying learning and life skills so that the student can excel in all classes, in college, in their careers, and beyond. These include essential skills such as planning and prioritizing, time management, focus, creative problem solving, innovation, advocacy, and emotional intelligence.
By providing our youth with the tools to grow into successful contributing members of society, we are making the monumental changes our world so desperately needs.