Kentucky Libraries Implement Live Homework Help Demonstration Project
One-to-one online tutoring available in 11 counties
NEW YORK– January 10, 2005 –Tutor.com, the leading provider of one-to-one learning and information services, announced today that the Kentucky Department for Libraries and Archives has implemented a demonstration project to make Live Homework Help® and Live Homework Help en Espanol available in eleven diverse counties throughout the state. Students in grades 4-12 in these counties can interact online with subject experts in the areas of math, science, social studies and English by accessing their library’s Web site from within the library or from any Internet-enabled computer. The service is available from 2 p.m. until 10 p.m. Eastern and Central Times seven days a week.
The Live Homework Help project is supported by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) as administered by the Kentucky Department for Libraries and Archives. The demonstration project will conclude at the end of September 2005.
According to Carol Baughman, Children’s and Youth Services Consultant at the Department for Libraries and Archives, one of the primary goals of the project is to enrich the relationship between public libraries and schools. "The State Library is looking at this project as a way to supplement library staff," Baughman said. "The project includes all sizes of libraries with a range of demographics from rural to suburban. We can’t help our libraries hire staff, but we can help them serve students after school." Baughman said Live Homework Help provides support to youth services staff, especially in the areas of math and science where library staff often don’t have the expertise to respond to students in the higher grade levels.
To access experienced tutors, students simply click on the Live Homework Help icon on their library’s Web site. They enter a user name and password, select a subject area, specify a grade level and are connected to a tutor available to assist them in English or in Spanish. Student and tutor can share Web pages, work together in the online classroom on a whiteboard, and share files such as essays and reports.
Baughman said the State Library is putting heavy emphasis on the importance of promoting the program and looks to the successful Live Homework Help program at Lexington Public Library (KY) as the role model for generating usage. In addition to promotional materials and training in their use from Tutor.com, library staff received training from Greg Davis, Marketing and Communications Manager at the Lexington Public Library. "Each of the eleven county libraries participating in the demonstration program is responsible for promotion and for establishing strong community partnerships," said Baughman. "Several of our counties have been very successful in working with their school systems. In Rowan County, the school system had eliminated funds for after school tutoring, so they enthusiastically embraced the demonstration program when the librarian presented it. As part of our follow up with the demonstration project participants we’ll be measuring the effectiveness of the tools the libraries used and the activities they undertook to promote the service and generate usage."
According to Baughman the statistics were impressive after just a few weeks of usage. "Tutor.com helped us jump-start our program with excellent technical, training and marketing support," she said. "The service was much easier to launch than I ever thought it would be. Our demonstration project libraries are a cross-section of geography and size, with library staff we know will be active in their communities and diligent about their LSTA reporting. The data from the demonstration project will be critical for moving forward to request funding to add more libraries. We have 116 library systems in the state. Our ultimate goal is to implement Live Homework Help statewide," she added.
The following Kentucky libraries are participating in the demonstration program:
- Grayson County Public Library, Leitchfield
- Logan County Public Library, Russellville
- McCracken County Public Library, Paducah
- Nelson County Public Library, Bardstown
- Ohio County Public Library, Hartford
- Oldham County Public Library, LaGrange
- Pike County Public Library District, Pikeville
- Robertson County Public Library, Mt. Olivet
- Rowan County Public Library, Morehead
- Shelby County Public Library, Shelbyville
- Trigg County John L. Street Library, Cadiz
Tutor.com is the leading provider of one-to-one learning and information solutions for libraries, education institutions and individuals. Using innovative technology, Tutor.com's suite of services allows users to get help online from professional subject experts anywhere, at any time. These highly personalized services are supported with superior training, communications, tracking and reporting features, and 24/7-customer service. To learn more about Tutor.com's services and for a complete client list please go to www.tutor.com.