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Close equity gaps with quality education support

Close equity gaps with quality education support.

Educate. Radiate. Elevate. is a 501(c)(3) education nonprofit providing free tutoring to underserved students in Illinois and Texas. We know firsthand that the quality of a child’s education is one of the main indicators of success as an adult. Thus, we provide high-quality tutoring services to our most vulnerable youth, aiding in the closure of the achievement and opportunity gap, and uplifting families, communities, and society as a whole.

Our Core Values

  • Empathy

    Our team empathizes with our students to build deeper connections, help us better understand what drives their behavior, and find strategies to help.

  • Educational Equity

    We know that all students can learn when given the opportunity, so we seek to ensure that our students have the support and resources they need to be successful.

  • Cultural Responsiveness

    We strive to learn from and relate respectfully with people of all cultural backgrounds by continually reflecting on our own backgrounds and behaviors, actively learning about our students’ cultures and communities, and adjusting our practices accordingly.

  • Holistic Approach

    We take a comprehensive approach to teaching by seeking to address the emotional, social, ethical, and academic needs of our students in an integrated learning format.

  • Partnership

    We understand that students’ opportunities for learning extend beyond classroom walls, and thus we strive to nourish meaningful connections with our students’ families, schools, and communities, as well as other organizations providing vital services to them.

Our Objectives

The pandemic highlighted the ongoing inequities that have existed in America for decades. Low-income students of color are among the hardest hit, resulting in long-term economic costs for local and national communities.

Children in poverty and children of color often have low-quality instruction, less conducive learning environments, lack of home support, and lower engagement. This is a result of decades of racism and oppression, generational trauma, cycles of poverty, rising mental health concerns, and other inequities plaguing the communities these children live in. Their families simply cannot give constant parental academic supervision nor pay for outside academic assistance. These disproportionate learning losses for low-income students of color are compounding existing achievement gaps in education, leading many students to drop out. 

The achievement gaps certainly raise moral questions for a society committed to the ideal of equity. But they also impose concrete economic costs. Research has shown that a widened Achievement Gap can result in:

  • More uneducated individuals who will be less likely to increase their own knowledge and less likely to provide their future families with high-quality educational opportunities, continuing the cycle
  • More citizens earning less income, leading to poverty with poorer health
  • More crime and higher rates of incarceration
  • A less skilled and less productive future workforce
  • Less money spent by these individuals on taxes, products, and services

Strengthening the educational achievement of our youth will provide economic, social, and emotional stability for the youth served, their families, and their community. Race and income are not destiny; large steps forward are possible. Quality education for all results in a more equitable society where individuals can improve their socio-economic situation on a basis of merit. 

It is urgent that we intervene immediately to support the most vulnerable students. As state and local government budgets are being cut, school systems are struggling to do this alone.

This tutoring nonprofit allows individuals and organizations to donate tax-deductible funds to sponsor students who have been nominated because of their dedication, achievement, and desire to learn. Their donations will provide the selected students with a term of instruction from our high-quality tutors who will focus on assisting the students with academics and test prep, while also teaching them the underlying learning and life skills so that the students can excel in all classes, in college, in their careers, and beyond. These include essential “soft skills” such as planning and prioritizing, time management, focus, creative problem-solving, curiosity, innovation, advocacy, collaboration, and emotional intelligence.

By providing our youth with the tools to grow into successful contributing members of society, we are making the monumental changes our world so desperately needs.

Our Founder and instructors know that in order to thrive in our rapidly evolving world, students must not only possess strong skills in areas such as language arts, mathematics, and science, but they must also be adept at skills such as curiosity, critical thinking, problem-solving, advocacy, and collaboration. 

Our Founder, Lindsey Wander, has the following experience and expertise:

  • B.S. in Biology, B.A. in Chemistry, Minor in Mathematics, Secondary Teaching Credentials in CA and IL
  • Traveled to more than 25 countries and 35 American states
  • Consistently teaching since 2005: Environmental Educator, Private Tutor, Classroom Teacher, and College Professor
  • STEM teacher to underprivileged middle school students from 2007-2011
  • Began tutoring full time in 2011
  • Formal training in: gang intervention, teaching culturally diverse students, Dyslexia, Dyscalculia, Executive Functioning, Auditory and Visual Processing Difficulties, ESL, high school and college entrance exams, college essays and applications
  • Officially founded WorldWise Tutoring LLC in 2015, which provides tutoring for students of all ages and all abilities in all subjects
  • Personally worked with thousands of children ages 0-18 from various backgrounds, with diverse abilities, in a wide range of subjects

Our Instructors have:

  • Diverse racial backgrounds, including: Asian, Black, Latinx, Indigenous, White, and Multiracial
  • Bachelor’s, Master’s, and/or PhD’s in genres ranging from Education to Biomedical Engineering from universities such as IIT, UIC, Northwestern, University of Houston, University of Texas, and Georgetown
  • Years of relevant experience teaching students 1-on-1, in small groups, and.or in classrooms
  • Been thoroughly background checked
  • Been trained by Lindsey Wander in best tutoring practices, including how to incorporate into their instruction lessons on metacognition, executive functions, and interpersonal skills
  • Been trained by Lindsey Wander in best practices when working with culturally diverse and disadvantaged youth
  • Experience with documenting detailed lesson notes which are sent to the students and their families after each session
Prior to starting our program, all students complete:
  • A standards-aligned assessment to determine their current levels of mastery in the core subjects of Math, Language Arts, and Reading
  • A survey to determine their present capacity for soft skills such as time management and leadership
Prior to their child starting our program, all parents/guardians complete:
  • Surveys in English or Spanish to detail their child’s current needs and present capacity for soft skills
Throughout the course of the program, tutors will regularly provide the students and their parents/guardians with feedback regarding the students’ progress. Upon completion of each term of their program, these students complete a post-assessment to quantify their improvement and a survey to qualify their growth. Their parents/guardians also complete a post-assessment to quantify their child’s progress and a survey to qualify their satisfaction with the program.
Students with good attendance are invited to participate in additional terms until they graduate.
 
Approximately six months after the completion of the program, the students and their parents/guardians complete a review to assess how the students have been progressing.
Educate. Radiate. Elevate. was incorporated in Illinois on 11/16/20 and received federal 501(c)(3) status on 2/26/21. In our initial 1-year pilot program, thirteen students received tutoring. Since that pilot concluded on 9/30/22, we have worked with an additional 40 students. Each student we have tutored is a grade 6-12, resides in a low-income household, and identifies as BIPOC. After completing 18 hours of 1:1 tutoring over 4 months, our students have shown improvements up to the equivalent of 2.3 years of math, 2.9 years in language arts, and 5.3 years in reading. They have also indicated dramatic decreases in anxiety and depression, as well as increases in self-esteem and adaptability. Learn more on our Impact page.

With a newfound love of learning and a clear path to their goals, our students will be less likely to experience poverty, thereby radiating success and elevating themselves, their families, and their communities.

As an organization, we have the following goals:
  • 2025: Add the option for in-person tutoring in IL & TX for students in grades 6-12, work with at least 35 students, and acquire/raise at least $140,000
  • 2026: Add grades K-5 (with in-person as an option)
  • 2027: Expand to a 3rd state for grades 6-12 online
  • 2028: Add the option for in-person tutoring for grades 6-12 in the 3rd state
  • 2029: Add grades K-5 in the 3rd state (with in-person as an option)

With continued growth, we can serve more students each year, thereby positively impacting their families, schools, and communities

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