Education Lab SAGA Innovations (Formerly Match Education)

Most attempts to improve academic outcomes for disadvantaged adolescents have yielded disappointing results. This has led some to argue that improving the academic outcomes of children in poverty is too difficult and costly once they reach adolescence.

Recent Education Lab research has shown that this conclusion may be premature. Very few interventions have targeted a key barrier to school success: “mismatch” between what is being taught and the academic level of youth, particularly those far behind grade level.

In partnership with SAGA Innovations and the Chicago Public Schools, the Education Lab has shown that providing individualized, one-on-two math tutoring for an hour a day during the regular school day can substantially improve outcomes for youth.

Students who participated in this tutoring program gained one to two additional years of math knowledge in a single year, equivalent to reducing the black-white achievement gap by roughly a third.

This evidence has led Chicago and New York City to invest public resources to bring this promising intervention to thousands of young people in disadvantaged neighborhoods.

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