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New to Yarmouth - SHINE tutoring relies on volunteers

Gaurav Arora is the co-ordinator for the free Yarmouth SHINE tutoring program. All students and volunteers receive a free T-shirt.
Gaurav Arora is the co-ordinator for the free Yarmouth SHINE tutoring program. All students and volunteers receive a free T-shirt. - Carla Allen

Need for Grade 10 math tutors is great

Yarmouth - A new tutoring program is growing well since launching last October.

SHINE Academics was founded in Halifax five years ago by Loran Morrison and Chloe Zinck. The acronym stands for Supporting, Helping and Inspiring through Non-profit Education.

Gaurav Arora is the local coordinator for the program. He’s also the St. John Ambulance division superintendent for the Yarmouth volunteer medical responders division.

Arora launched the SHINE program in Yarmouth with six students and three teachers. It’s grown to 10 students and seven tutors.

The program is a completely volunteer-based organization that provides math and science tutoring to students from elementary to high school.

Sessions are held every Wednesday from 4 to 6 p.m. at the public library.

Arora says one-on-one tutoring is provided to students who might be at risk.

“They might be falling behind in class or at risk of dropping out,” he said.

“They might just need some help with their homework. They’re matched with a tutor and work with that same tutor every week until June.

“That way they have a good working relationship and the tutor knows what that particular student struggles with.”

The teachers are mostly volunteers with a university degree or high school students that are helping out elementary or junior high school students.

Arora says the teachers enjoy the tutoring experience as they are contributing back to their communities and learning better ways to communicate. Most of the high school volunteers are in their Grade 12 year and some are considering careers in teaching.

“This is a good way to gain experience,” said Arora.

There are more elementary students enrolled than Grade 12 students and many spots are open for higher grade levels.

There are a lot of students who are struggling with Grade 10 math, says Arora, so tutors are being sought for that subject.

“They’re the hardest ones to get in this community, whereas in Halifax there are a lot of university students who are able to help out,” he said.

The Yarmouth library sponsors the program and has provided a room for each session. The Yarmouth YMCA also supports the program.

Healthy snacks and learning supplies are provided by the sponsor – Gordon Stirrett Wealth Management, an investment firm in Halifax.

To apply to the SHINE program

To sign up as a student requiring free tuition or as a volunteer teacher, apply through this link.

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