Los Angeles, CA – Today, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors unanimously approved a motion authored by Chair Janice Hahn to establish a one-year pilot summer tutoring program at LA County Library locations. The pilot is expected to launch in 2024 at 36 locations across the County, including 12 in Hahn’s district: Alondra (Norwalk), Bell Gardens, Bell, Cudahy, Hawaiian Gardens, Huntington Park, South Gate, Maywood, Lynwood, Norwalk, Clifton M. Brakensiek (Bellflower), and Paramount.
“I’m proud of the fact that our LA County Libraries are hubs of information and resources for residents, and now through our libraries we’re responding to yet another need. In historically overlooked communities, students are falling behind, perpetuating a cycle that we know contributes to lower quality of life. This program is going to give many the extra help they need to catch up, and it’ll also offer great summer job options for high school and college students who need the experience,” said Chair Hahn.
The program will operate for 8 weeks with a focus on reading and math for students in 1st through 8th grades. The 36 libraries are in high-need communities served by LA County Library, and were identified using the LA County Anti-Racism, Diversity, and Inclusion Initiative’s Racial Equity explorer tool. Library staff will work with local school districts to identify students for the program.
“We are committed to providing equitable access to resources that support education and lifelong learning,” said Skye Patrick, LA County Library Director. “Establishing a pilot tutoring program at LA County Library will help students make the best use of our resources while also helping them cultivate a strong foundation for learning that will serve them well academically today and into the future.”
According to the 2022 California Reading Report Card, “58% of California’s third graders are below grade level in reading”. Among low-income students of color, that number rises to more than 75%. Low early reading achievement is highly correlated with low high-school grades, failure to graduate, and likelihood of being incarcerated. In addition, according to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, research shows that students who pass Algebra 1 by 9th grade are twice as likely to graduate high school and more likely to enroll and graduate with a bachelor’s degree and go on to well-paid careers.