The Louisiana Department of Education (LDOE) is launching a new program that will provide thousands of families with $1,000 tutoring vouchers to help children learn to read. The Steve Carter Literacy Tutoring Program connects families of eligible K-5 public school students with high-quality literacy tutors. Starting Nov. 9, Louisiana families can visit the online portal to learn more about the program and share their email address to be notified when student registration opens this year.
“This voucher is another tool in the toolbox to help kids learn to read,” said State Superintendent Dr. Cade Brumley. “Steve Carter believed in helping kids – that’s what this program does.”
The Steve Carter Literacy Tutoring Program is named after the late Baton Rouge State Representative. The program is the result of Act 415 of the 2021 Legislative Session (RS 17:4032.1). The LDOE has invested $40 million to fund the program as part of the state’s comprehensive strategy to combat Louisiana’s literacy crisis.
School systems are now identifying eligible students and will notify families if they are eligible. Students in grades K-3 are eligible if they scored below proficient on their beginning of year screener. Students in grades 4-5 are eligible if they scored below Mastery in ELA on the spring 2022 LEAP assessment. Families who are unsure of how their child scored should contact their school for additional information.
Eligible families can expect communication from their school system about the program and how to access the user platform. Once student registration opens, families can use the online portal at www.louisianatutoringinitiative.com to register, browse available tutors, and manage their $1,000 voucher. Families who have additional questions after contacting their school system can email LouisianaLiteracy@la.gov.
This program connects families with high-quality tutors who have been approved through the LDOE. Tutors are certified teachers in elementary or reading or have a degree in education, English, or another subject indicative of expertise in reading and literacy.
Once student registration opens, families will utilize the online portal at www.louisianatutoringinitiative.com to choose from the approved list of tutoring providers. In some cases, a child’s school system may be a tutoring provider. Tutoring appointments are scheduled between the parent/guardian and tutor and may take place at a mutually agreed upon location that may be a physical or virtual location. Multi-lingual tutors will be available to accommodate students who do not speak English as a primary language.