The Ector County School District allocated $3 million in federal recovery funds toward student tutoring. Unlike traditional tutoring contracts, Ector County used a “pay for success” model whereby the tutoring companies earned more money if the students made progress on the district’s interim assessments (MAP tests). Students were identified for tutoring support based on their preliminary scores on the MAP tests or if they failed an end-of-course test the prior year.
According to the district, the pay for success funding model encouraged the providers to become more engaged, maintain good attendance records, and to follow up with students if they missed tutoring sessions. The district’s use of tutoring firms had the added benefit of shifting the burden from already overworked classroom educators to provide supplemental support. According to news reports, more than 6,000 students in kindergarten through high school have been receiving tutoring under this contract model.
We are spotlighting this because it is a unique way to help ensure tutoring efforts are achieving the desired goal of helping to make student achievement gains. We also believe the approach to paying more for successful tutoring—according to student outcome data—is a strong practice.