Tutoring program reaches K to 12th

Maggie Krohne

It’s not as simple as reading, writing and arithmetic.

The LoveLight program, or “study buddy” as it has become known to its participants, is a tutoring program where Kent State students teach students in grades kindergarten to 12th grade more than just the three “R’s.”

LoveLight, which has been reaching out to children since 1995, was created “as a way to benefit children and their families as well as college students,” said Betsy Justice, the program’s originator and executive director and a part-time Kent State instructor. The program was created to help students reach their fullest potential, Justice said.

This tutoring program pairs two Kent State students, or “big” study buddies, with two students in high school or elementary school, or “little” study buddies, to create a community of learners that best fits each student’s needs.

This group meets about once a week, depending on the needs of all involved.

“The little study buddies respond well to the big study buddies, and the Kent State students are great role models,” Justice said. “We have received positive feedback on school improvement. Last year, a little study buddy improved in math from an F at the beginning of spring semester, to a C by the end of March, with continued improvement during the semester.”

But there is more to LoveLightthan just academic learning. Little study buddies also learn better communication skills, problem solving and how to have fun while learning.

“The study buddy program is beneficial to the big study buddies as well,” Justice said. “Kent State students, particularly education majors, have an opportunity to gain valuable experience working with children, particularly children who may be of a different background than themselves.”

This all-around achievement has Justice looking to expand on an already successful program.

“We’re still looking for student volunteers,” she said. “Education majors are especially encouraged to participate, but others are welcome as well.”

Volunteers cannot have a criminal record, and they must be patient, creative, reliable, enthusiastic and willing to make a commitment and honor it, she said.

For more information on how you can get involved, contact Justice by phone at (330) 673-3716 or by e-mail at [email protected].

Contact features reporter Maggie Krohne at [email protected].