Students Give Up Part of Summer to Close Achievement Gap

New York - This summer over 1,200 minority students from across the country have demonstrated their commitment to creating a foundation for success by participating in a highly competitive academic program designed to close their personal achievement gap and prepare them for high school.  In partnership with TutaPoint education, the A Better Chance organization, which has placed high potential students from underperforming schools or other challenging situations into leading private and public schools for more than 50 years, is delivering a tailored, six-hour online curriculum and testing program to students throughout the country. Students “sit” in a live online class with 20 other A Better Chance cohorts and learn required concepts in language arts, writing and math.


“These classes are designed to cover the specific math and writing concepts that students need to have fully comprehended by their grade level in order to maintain a strong academic trajectory. A student entering school this fall with a mastery of skills on par with their peers around the country is a successful outcome,” said Ryan Duques of TutaPoint.


Many of these high potential students are already at a disadvantage, coming from public schools where resources are thin and standardized test scores are well below average.  Each year thousands of students vie for 1,200 cohort spots, the first step in potentially earning a spot at a high performing partner high school. Despite their aptitude, many of these students are behind because their local school system is not   able to meet the extreme [academic] diversity of the student body.


The highly motivated student cohorts have dedicated a portion of their summer to closing their personal achievement gap – regardless of how far they live from a classroom. Students must commit to spending up to two hours in an online class each Saturday for a month. Additionally, students must complete writing assignments and math assessments outside of the classroom.


Over 30% of the cohorts in the program receive their live learning experience online, which removes the geographic barriers that have prevented access to many students until recently.


“Only a decade ago, students who lived in an area with fewer educational opportunities did not have access to high-quality resources required to advance their learning outside of school. With the innovation of online learning resources, today, we can remove geographic barriers allowing students to join a live class, within a proven teaching environment and play a proactive role in their educational future,” said Duques.


Similar to an actual classroom, the cohorts are able to see and hear their instructor, raise their (digital) hand when they have questions and talk to fellow students. Online classes also enable some additional benefits like recordings of the classes and the ability to integrate assessments into the teaching process before and during the live class.


“Amaya has embraced her cohort experience with a great deal of enthusiasm and pride,” says parent Mariory Deleon of Queens, New York. "The experience of participating in this program has increased her focus and confidence.”


About A Better Chance

A Better Chance is the oldest and only national organization of its kind changing the life trajectory for academically talented youth of color via access to rigorous and prestigious educational opportunities for students in
grades 6-12.


About TutaPoint

TutaPoint is a leading provider of online academic assistance, providing services to thousands of students across the United States, Europe and Asia each year.



Contact: Ryan Duques (203) 779-0331 or


NOTE: Regional photos / interviews with student participants is available upon request. Students from Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, Southeast, Midwest, Southwest and West coast are participating.  

August 04, 2015