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UA education majors launch ‘Homework Hotline’ to help area K-12 students finish school year strong

A Dalton graduate and fellow UA education major have launched online homework help for area students to help them finish the school year strong.

The free tutoring program is designed to give K-12 students the chance to work one-on-one with a trained education major through a video or telephone call to receive assistance in math, science, social studies and language arts, according to a news release.

Matthew Derksen, 23, attended Dalton Local Schools for his whole K-12 experience and graduated from the high school in 2015.

The Akron area resident graduated this past weekend from The University of Akron with a double major in AYA (adolescent-to-young-adult) Social Studies Education and History.

“When I was at Dalton, as part of NHS, I tutored at the middle school during my junior and senior years,” Derksen wrote in an email. “I worked with Mrs. Detweiler and Mr. Berg and my experiences with them and the students were instrumental in moving me toward the world of education as a career.”

Derksen, who has been doing his student teacher experience at Barberton this semester, said he has seen the struggles that his students have had since the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has forced schools to switch to remote learning.

“After talking with other teachers and students, this idea just clicked and made sense,” Derksen wrote. “In schools, students have tons of resources where they can go and get help; tutors, intervention specialists, and teachers. The question is, where do students go for help when they are working online? That’s where the homework hotline comes in. Students can schedule a time to work with a tutor who is studying to work in the subject area they need help in.”

Both Derksen and Cheyenne Oechsle, who is from Van Wert, developed the K-12 Homework Hotline as undergraduate students within the LeBron James Family Foundation College of Education at UA.

The program began at the end of April and runs Monday through Friday 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. through the rest of the school year.

Signups for tutoring can be done through www.uakron. edu/education/homework/.

Read more in the May 13, 2020 edition.

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