Orwell Award Announcement SusanOhanian.Org Home

[Susan notes: Walt Gardner makes hard-hitting points. Contrast his article with the hot air of the (previous) letter from the tutoring industry spokesman.]

Published in Chicago Tribune

To the editor

Los Angeles -- I taught for 28 years in the Los Angeles Unified School District. Whether provided by Chicago Public Schools teachers or by outside firms, tutoring under the federal No Child Left Behind Act can never have more than a modest impact on reading and math test score gains. That's because disadvantaged students bring huge deficits in socialization, motivation and intellectual development to class that have been accumulated over many years through no fault of their own. It's unrealistic to expect tutoring alone to compensate for their deficiencies.

It's too little, too late.

It will take collaboration between school and community on an unprecedented scale to narrow the appalling achievement gap that plagues Chicago and other cities with disproportionate numbers of poor students. Privatization advocates claim that they can do a better job, but they have not supplied convincing evidence.

Walt Garnder

This site contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of education issues vital to a democracy. We believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more information click here. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use', you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.