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Tutoring Industry Denies Terrorism Halliburton Charges

By Alexander Russo — April 04, 2007 4 min read
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Better late than never, the Education Industry Association, which represents the tutoring companies in Washington, has finally put out a press release in response to Senator Clinton’s “Halliburton all over again” charge from last weekend (see below) saying that they are surprised by the remarks and have worked with Clinton on tutoring legislation last year. The statement (below) doesn’t acknowledge the mishaps and questionable practices that have popped up, or the difficulties districts and states have had weeding out bad apples, but says SES participation and satisfaction rates are up, and that 500K children are participating now. The statement:

Statement of Education Industry Association Executive Director Steven Pines In Response to Remarks Made by U.S. Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton Regarding Federally Funded Tutoring Under “No Child Left Behind”

WASHINGTON, DC-- April 4, 2007 -- The Education Industry Association

(EIA) is surprised by remarks made by U.S. Senator and presidential
hopeful Hillary Rodham Clinton last week to the National Education
Association’s New Hampshire chapter, which seemingly reflected a
misperception of our members’ performance and commitment to accountability under the supplemental educational services (SES) program under “No Child Left Behind (NCLB).”

In fact, there are multiple layers of accountability that are explicitly
built into NCLB, enacted five years ago with overwhelming bipartisan
support. Today, all SES tutoring providers, including school districts,
non-profit and faith-based organizations, as well as private companies, are approved through a competitive process by each state in which they seek to offer services. Federal law requires that states only approve “research-based” programs, and gives states the flexibility to set high standards of academic rigor and financial integrity as a condition of approval. Local school districts enter into binding contracts with each provider covering terms of service and billing rates. Parents of eligible children then choose the provider they believe is best-suited for their child.

Once tutoring begins, providers are only paid for sessions attended by the student. Additionally, school districts and States monitor the
tutoring and collect student data to develop an overall assessment of
each provider and the program based on test scores and customer
satisfaction reports. If a provider is deemed ineffective after just two
years of service, a State may remove the provider from its list of
approved tutoring organizations. This is a system of multiple checks
and balances.

SES is working across the country, including the nation’s largest school district of New York City. At the same time, we agree that more progress is needed. That is why we have worked closely with Senator Clinton and her staff as they crafted and introduced last year S. 3869, a bill specifically designed to improve student access and
accountability. Senator Clinton, committed to bettering an already
credible school improvement program, sought the education industry’s
input. EIA hopes her recent comments do not signal a change in her
commitment to empower low-income families to choose from among a variety of high-quality tutoring providers, including members of the EIA.

What’s more important about SES is what it means to enrolled students and their families. SES has leveled the playing field for thousands of low-income, low-achieving students in struggling schools. Today, they have the same access to high-quality tutoring that affluent families have used for decades. Every year, SES enrollments have increased, and this year, an estimated 500,000 low-income students will receive after school tutoring from a variety of high-quality providers, including school districts themselves. According to a number of state and school district studies, more than 8 in 10 SES-enrolled families say the tutoring is helping to motivate and raise the grades of their children (see EIA report on SES evaluation studies carried out to date at www.educationindustry.org).

EIA wants to continue working with Senator Clinton and her staff to
increase student participation, toughen accountability standards, and
better coordinate services with local schools. On behalf of our 600
members, and their tens of thousands of dedicated teachers/tutors, EIA also looks forward to working with Senator Edward Kennedy, and Congressman George Miller, respective chairs of the Senate and House committees responsible for the reauthorization of “No Child Left
Behind.”

About the Education Industry Association The Education Industry
Association works to expand educational opportunities and improve
student achievement for learners of all ages by infusing American
education with market-based drivers of service, innovation, and results.

Founded in 1990, EIA is the leading trade association for private
providers of education services, suppliers, and other private
organizations in all sectors of education. EIA currently has more than
600 individual and corporate members. For more information call EIA
Executive Director Steven Pines at 800-252-3280 or visit
www.educationindustry.org.

The opinions expressed in This Week In Education are strictly those of the author(s) and do not reflect the opinions or endorsement of Editorial Projects in Education, or any of its publications.


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