Writing Center revisions
February 28, 2017
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Since opening in October of 2010, the Writing Center has held thousands of conferences throughout, and has assisted students with any type of writing across the curriculum.
Beginning next year, the Writing Center will expand to what is tentatively being called the Peer Tutoring Center. For the Writing Center, this means tutoring not only writing assignments, but tutoring all subjects, including math and science.
“I brought it up to admin, and admin as a whole thought it would be a good idea to change the format a little bit to include all subject-matters,” said Director of Student Services Malicia Braxton. “With the loss of Spartan Time, the thought was how we can incorporate all of the subject matters that will assist in meeting student needs.”
Converting to the Peer Tutoring Center is no easy process. While the administration has voted to start making the changes immediately in the next school year, there is a quick turnaround time for the Writing Center staff.
Despite the initial worries, English teacher and Writing Center director Jenny Goransson has taken the initiative and already begun to prep her students to run the Peer Tutoring Center. Along with setting up class visits to advertise and recruit more tutors for next year, she has reached out to other teachers for support.
“Ms. Goransson has done a great job at getting ahead of the herd,” said Braxton. “She sent an e-mail schoolwide asking teachers to send lists of students who they think are fit for peer tutoring.”
Additionally, Goransson has addressed some concerns regarding overlapping service hours required in honor societies. As many members of honor societies also tutor in various subjects for points, the Peer Tutoring Center may serve as a bridge between service and the pure desire to help a fellow student.
“I’ve reached out to honor society directors to make it clear that the service stuff they do is not the class,” said Goransson. “[Peer Tutoring] is actually a class someone takes whereas doing something for honors society is service. This part is different to me and I hope we can collaborate.”
Now that the Writing Center tutors will be tutoring other subjects, tutor training will have to be revisited. Some tutors may also need to evaluate which subject areas they are strong in, such as history or world languages. Even so, tutors remain optimistic regarding the big conversion.
“I like that I can work on my tutoring skills and expand them to other subjects,” said sophomore and first year tutor Sophia Haile. “It might be a little unorganized at first, but it will be interesting to see how the first month goes.”
On the other hand, senior tutors won’t get to take part in and witness the expansion of the Writing Center. However, they continue to contribute by mentoring the first year tutors through sharing their experiences and overseeing their tutor training.
“I think next year’s tutors should be very flexible like they have been with all the construction,” said senior and second year tutor Jei-Ming Ang. “They should have patience and maturity.”
Though the conversion has its benefits and downfalls, small steps are already being taken to keep the transition process as smooth as possible.
With the combined effort of students and staff, the Peer Tutoring Center will function as an available resource for students who are struggling with any subject and prefer help outside of the classroom. In return, peer tutors have the opportunity to establish relationships with students from all grade levels.
“I really love watching students who find learning and writing fun and get to be with others who feel the same way,” said Goransson. “I think that vibrant energy will be maintained when we convert to the Peer Tutoring Center.”