Most Guilford County Schools’ students who participated in HELPS tutoring during the fall semester showed growth on mid-year reading assessments, and a third of students exceeded expected growth. Say Yes Guilford is partnering with Guilford County Schools to make the Helping Early Learners with Practice Strategies program available to improve reading proficiency for elementary students. Trained HELPS tutors worked one-on-one virtually with students during the fall semester.

  • 83% of GCS students participating in the HELPS program displayed growth. 
  • 33% of students receiving HELPS tutoring exceeded expected growth.

Despite the success, fewer students showed growth as compared to data from the 2019-20 school year, when all tutoring was face-to-face. During the same period of 2019, 100% of students participating in HELPS showed growth and 67% exceeded expected growth.  “Expected growth” metrics are based on traditional learning environments and standard educational increases due to developmental milestones coupled with the standard curriculum. Say Yes Guilford Chief Impact Officer Amanda Rosemann says the results mirror the recent findings of Guilford County Schools. “As we all know, this educational year has been far from “traditional”. To see this level of growth of students in the program when all are learning virtually is exciting, and we are encouraged that the HELPS impact will be magnified by the opportunity to serve more students as they return to face-to-face instruction.”

With some elementary students returning to the classroom, and an increase in capacity provided by a grant partnership with the Get Ready Guilford Initiative, Say Yes Guilford will expand students served via the HELPS program to additional elementary schools for in-person learners this spring while continuing to serve all of our virtual students.

Say Yes Guilford partnered this fall with Greensboro College and GTCC to provide work-study students training in the HELPS program. Additionally, GCS high schoolers earning service-learning hours and community volunteers are working with elementary schoolers in reading, math, social studies and science. All Say Yes Guilford tutoring is free to GCS students.

Related: Role of Tutors During Pandemic

Say Yes Guilford is committed to providing access to support services and scholarships designed to prepare Guilford County Schools’ students for success in college, career and life. Since its inception in 2015, Say Yes Guilford has awarded over 10.3 million to GCS graduates, and our partnership with more than 100 private colleges and universities provided another $18.2 million for a total impact of over $28.5 million. 

Say Yes Guilford scholarship registration is open for GCS seniors through June 1, 2021.