A+ Tutoring changes the way its program works


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Alex Odom (11) tutors for the A+ program in the library.

Change is something that all students and staff in the Mehlville School District are trying to adapt to this school year. Some of these changes have involved the A+ Program. 

The program has worked hard to try and find a sense of normalcy for their students this semester. Normally, the program would have tutors meet with students in-person after school. Now, the scholarship program has changed its plan. 

The new plan involves A+ Program Assistant Mrs. Stephanie Ponciroli, who says that A+ tutors would report to the library to be available for students to attend a tutoring session through a Google Meet link. The tutors were able to try out their new schedule by having two days per week dedicated to tutoring over the course of two weeks before the return to in-person learning. But they got disappointing results; not one student showed up in the google meets. 

“I wouldn’t necessarily say it’s working well,” said Ponciroli. “It’s just like everything else, we are trying to adapt to the current times.”

Despite the challenges, Ponciroli has high hopes for the program. “We are hoping to allow our A+ tutors back in at the elementary and middle schools soon,” she said.

OHS student Kendal Weiskopf (12) has had some concerns with the virtual tutoring. “I did tutor virtually at the school,” she said, “but I don’t think anyone joined any, so it just wasn’t really the same.” 

Weiskopf has been concerned about getting enough hours for the program. However, the A+ Scholarship Program has reduced the amount of hours required for seniors in high school. Originally, 50 hours of tutoring were required in order to receive a scholarship, but because of the current circumstances, the program has changed that to only 25 hours for seniors. 

Weiskopf is relieved since there’s “not as much pressure making sure we get all our hours”. 

Meg Heveroh (12) is also relieved the program changed the amount of hours required. 

Heveroh says she had concerns about earning the amount of hours that were required for the program. After the change, she said she likes how the A+ Scholarship Program cut back the hours needed. Yet Heveroh says she’s still had issues “trying to find an opportunity to earn more hours.” 

Alex Odom (11) says he has not had any problems with the program. 

“So far the new adaptations have been working,” said Odom. “There haven’t been any problems that I know about with how the new A+ is going.” 

Odom says he enjoys the new format and likes how he has time to get his work done while “waiting to help anyone.”

Even after the Mehlville School District sent its high schools back to the virtual “connected” model on Nov. 16, the program is still looking to help out its students at OHS. The school is asking the faculty to help A+ students with their pursuit of hours. A+ tutors will be encouraged to come up to the school during intervention time when teachers have their students in the building.