Arista peer tutoring

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By Sharon Lee and Sruthi Manish, Staff Writers

The Arista Honor Society Chapter is and has always been a key aspect of student life at Townsend Harris. Each year, students from 10th grade and up are able to apply to Arista and are required to have a 90%+ cumulative average and commit to 40 hours of community service.

Arista members are not only rewarded for their hard work and commitment but are also expected to give back to the school community. Thus, over the years, members have had the option of peer tutoring in order to help struggling students with their studies.

In early January 2019, Student Coordinator Sarah Loew sent out a notice to current Arista members regarding becoming tutors for the already existing peer tutoring program during lunch/free bands. Members were able to sign up as tutors if they believed they had a good understanding in certain subjects.

Mrs. Loew expressed her hopes in Arista members becoming tutors, “Since Arista members have at least a 90% GPA, they can offer supportive and reliable help in a variety of academic areas. Many students don’t have the same lunch band as their teacher and can’t see their teacher regularly for tutoring, so this is a great way to help students receive the extra support they need.”

 Junior Class President Annlin Su also expressed the importance of peer tutoring, stating, “We are encouraging Arista members to become tutors since it is a way of giving back to the community.”

Freshman Maymuna Nur Suf Mazumder stated, “Students may benefit [from] this program of mandatory peer tutoring by learning how to interact with their classmates. They will be able to do so in an informative environment where they can contribute to their peer’s understanding of the academic criteria.”

However, it seems as though not many members have signed up to be tutors. Mrs. Loew continued, “The peer tutoring program has the potential to support many students’ academic growth, but there has been difficulty recruiting enough tutors to meet the requests for tutoring.”

The specific areas and subjects where peer tutors are needed the most are Chemistry and Spanish during lunch and free bands. Arista members are encouraged to apply as tutors if they have not yet and will receive in school community service and club credit.

We are still working out some of the kinks but ideally all Arista members will be available to peer tutor if needed during their lunch band in at least 1-2 subjects,” Mrs. Loew said.