The National Student Support Accelerator

The National Student Support Accelerator (the Accelerator) is devoted to translating promising research about how tutoring can benefit students into action on the ground. The organization’s vision is that every K-12 student in need will have access to an effective tutor who champions and ensures their learning and success.

Launched by a diverse community of education experts and scholars from around the country, the Accelerator is building a comprehensive set of tools and resources for tutoring organizations, schools and districts that will make it possible to implement high-impact tutoring at scale. Research shows that high-impact tutoring — tutoring delivered three or more times a week by consistent, trained tutors using quality materials and data to inform instruction — is one of the most effective academic interventions, providing an average of more than four months of additional learning in elementary literacy and almost 10 months in high school math. 

Tutoring has long been available to well-resourced students. But low income students and students of color have rarely had access to the kind of intensive tutoring that could improve their learning trajectories, and previous efforts to scale up tutoring initiatives have not been successful in maintaining quality or reaching enough children who need help. The open-source Accelerator tools and resources can help ensure more equitable access to quality tutoring. These research-backed tools and supports are easy to use and downloadable, and are designed to make structuring, implementing and scaling high-quality, high-impact tutoring programs as straightforward as possible. 

Beyond developing open access tools, the Accelerator aims to catalyze the field of tutoring by creating communities of practice, building consensus around standards, and coordinating research efforts. The Accelerator will also assess the quality of tutoring programs and provide technical assistance both to schools and districts interested in implementing tutoring and to tutoring providers interested in improvement. 

Currently, the Accelerator is engaging and activating stakeholders to build demand and ensure funding. We are also:

  • Continuing to establish and monitor at least ten pilot sites to learn more about what drives effectiveness, the barriers to implementation, and how to overcome these barriers.
  • Connecting with stakeholders to design a District Playbook to make it easier for districts to grow their own tutoring program or partner with a tutoring organization to launch or improve a high-impact tutoring program.
  • Responding to requests for assistance from districts, tutoring organizations, and advocacy organizations to support their high-impact tutoring efforts.
  • Developing materials and webinars to share research, policy recommendations, and tools for designing and implementing high-impact tutoring programs.
  • Raising funding to implement the Accelerator’s strategy and operational plans for the next five years, as outlined in the business plan.

During this developmental stage, the Annenberg Institute at Brown University and an Advisory Board of national education leaders are leading this project.