Illinois Tutoring Initiative

Building confident learners through high-impact tutoring

Become a part of the Illinois Tutoring Initiative — a bold vision for supporting student learning and social-emotional health in the wake of the pandemic. With a focus on collaboration and high-impact tutoring, we're changing lives and building futures.


“I love coming to tutoring. It is one of my favorite parts of the day because I know I will get to have fun while learning new things. It has helped me read and write better. I am also able to do more work in class by myself, which makes me feel proud of myself.” 

Angelo, Cahokia Penniman Elementary

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Equity, Safety, Cohesion

Why high-impact tutoring?

Based on its solid research foundation, the Initiative utilizes the high-impact model to deliver tutoring across the state. According to the National Student Support Accelerator, “Rigorous research shows that High-Impact Tutoring is unusually effective for accelerating student learning.

In fact, it is more effective than other interventions that have been tested and is effective across grade and content levels.” High-impact tutoring is based on the foundational elements of equity, safety, and cohesion and features:

Consistent Tutors

Consistent tutors who are well-supported and trained in culturally relevant tutoring practices and social-emotional learning (SEL) practices in addition to content material

Quality Resources

Use of high-quality resources that are aligned with curriculum and learning standards


One-to-one or small group delivery for at least three sessions per week


Program instruction and improvement that is data-driven



Illinois stands out as a pioneer in education recovery, achieving full English Language Arts (ELA) recovery amid pandemic disruptions. This accomplishment reflects the state's commitment to academic excellence and targeted strategies supporting student growth. Through collaboration among educators, administrators, policymakers, and communities, Illinois has forged a successful path forward, serving as a model for others. By prioritizing student needs and innovation, Illinois emerges stronger, shaping a brighter future for all.

High-Quality, High-Dosage Tutoring

Academic Excellence Amplified

Recognized by the White House

We are PROUD to share that the Biden-Harris administration recently recognized the ITI for our high-impact tutoring efforts for students impacted by the pandemic. We are identified as having a high-quality, high-dosage tutoring program suggesting it is a successful strategy worth replicating elsewhere.

Christy Borders and WGLT

Our very own Executive Director, Christy Borders, sat down with WGLT to share the positive impact our program has had on high-impact tutoring in school districts throughout the state. The Illinois Tutoring Initiative's data has proved that our unique approach to high-impact tutoring is working.

Listen to the full interview with Christy Borders

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"Weathering the Storm”: Federal Efforts Helped Bolster U.S. Education Standing Among Peer Nations

DECEMBER 05, 2023 

The OECD released international testing data from the Program for International Student Assessment (PISA). The PISA measures 15-year-olds’ performance in math, science, and reading worldwide every three years.[1] The previous assessment was done in 2018, and the recent release was conducted in 2022–allowing for an examination of COVID’s impact on students and of global recovery efforts.

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Christy Borders

A COVID-era tutoring initiative worked with thousands of Illinois students. Will it continue?

A statewide tutoring initiative with a tie to Illinois State University has produced demonstrable results in reading and math for students in the past two years, but its status as a COVID-era program funded by pandemic relief money leaves its future uncertain. Since the 2022-23 academic school year, the Illinois Tutoring Initiative [ITI] has brought more than 83,000 hours of what’s called high-impact tutoring to over 6,000 students across the state.

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Incredible Impact

The numbers speak for themselves

The Illinois Tutoring initiative supports the learning and social/emotional well-being of students in the wake of the pandemic by building confident learners through high-impact tutoring. Tutoring is available in-person for reading and math for students in grades 3-8. Online math tutoring is available for high school students.


"The other day, I got some great news from one of my students, Annabelle. She had a wonderful day at school! When I asked her why, she said that when she raised her hand in class, she got called on twice and got all the answers right. Though to some, this may seem like a small thing to do, this is a huge stride for Annabelle! She even moved up a reading group. I'm just so proud of her and think she truly deserves the world!"

Kira B, Tutor at Murphysboro Carruthers

Tutor Assignments


Be a part of life-changing impact


"I would HIGHLY recommend. This needs to be implemented everywhere! Not only do the kids take something away from it, but the teachers too. I think that teachers will see such an exciting difference in their students. Parents will see more confidence in their learners. I can't rave about it enough."  

Lindsey Bond

CCSD 168 Strassburg Elementary

"My experience has been unique because I am working with a student who needs enrichment. I had never had much experience working one on one with a student who needed enrichment activities. It has been a wonderful experience seeing my student grow and be challenged each day by our activities."

Lindsey Blackaller

DeKalb Lincoln Elementary

"I am a retired teacher and this job is perfect for me. I am able to use my years of experience in the classroom to continue making a difference in children's lives. The support from our region coordinator and administration has been wonderful. If I need anything I can call, and they are willing to assist me.” 

Eymarde Lawler

Peoria Glen Oak Elementary

“I like seeing the spark in children’s eyes when they understand a concept or achieve fluency in a particular area! I have one student who is now more confident and is more willing to try the “hard stuff”. I am thankful for the team of educators, administrators, and other tutors who are committed to providing support to these children.” 

Allison Nix

Marquette Elementary

ITI Insights

What's New?

Student and tutor outcomes report for AY23

Exciting News! Check out the latest report on how our tutoring program in Illinois has helped students and tutors in the academic year 23! Thanks to everyone's dedication and hard work, we've achieved fantastic results! Let's celebrate our success and continue making a difference together!


Our September newsletter is live!

Join us in celebrating educational milestones, exploring the rich tapestry of resources, and applauding the joyful experiences of our tutoring events, as detailed in our vibrant September newsletter, symbolizing our persistent stride towards academic excellence.

Discover iSpire!

Dive into iSpire, your path to academic success! Make use of enriching resources and enhance your tutoring sessions. Join us in our commitment to educational excellence and the pursuit of brighter futures.

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Apply Today

Join us in shaping futures

Become a part of the Illinois Tutoring Initiative and play a crucial role in shaping the future of education, empowering students, and making a lasting difference in our community.