How to Make Additional Time Matter: Integrating Individualized Tutorials into an Extended Day

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Support for extending the school day has gained substantial momentum despite limited causal evidence that it increases student achievement. Existing evidence is decidedly mixed, in part, because of the stark differences in how schools use additional time. In this paper, I focus on the effect of additional time in school when that time is used for individualized tutorials. In 2005, MATCH Charter Public High School integrated two hours of individualized tutorials throughout an extended school day. The unanticipated implementation of this initiative and the school’s lottery enrollment policy allow me to use two complementary quasi-experimental methods to estimate program effects. I find that providing students with two hours of daily tutorials that are integrated into the school day and taught by full-time, recent college graduates increased achievement on 10th grade English language arts exams by 0.15- 0.25 standard deviations per year. I find no average effect in mathematics beyond the large gains students were already achieving, although quantile regression estimates suggest that the tutorials raised the lowest end of the achievement distribution in mathematics.


Last updated on 08/12/2015