Pinellas County SchoolsGet Paid for Grades is preparing for a successful 2016-2017 school year.  Along with Clearwater High School, five new high schools are committed to enrolling over 300 students into the program.

The new schools joined Get Paid for Grades following Clearwater’s success during the 2015-2016 year. Leslie Hopkins, assistant principal at Clearwater High School, has been involved with Get Paid for Grades since the program’s inception in 2013.

“We are happy to partner with Get Paid for Grades again this year,” Hopkins said. “They are a tremendous support and are concerned with improving academic achievement.”

New Reading Element is Key to Program Success

Get Paid for Grades exists to reinforce public school efforts by providing necessary resources to improve students’ overall learning experience.

Last spring, Get Paid for Grades added a new reading component to increase student academic success. As part of the program’s expansion, underachieving students were provided with supplemental tutoring sessions, aimed to improve literacy.

Get Paid Get Paid for Grades founder Monica Eaton-Cardone explained that this new component of the program offered compound benefits for students and schools. “Statistically, when students’ literacy improves they become more confident and gain a greater understanding of content in all areas,” Eaton-Cardone explained. “This fact inherently increases their overall academic performance.”

Demonstrated Success for GPFG

Looking at last year’s results, it’s clear that Get Paid for Grades’ new program achieves the organizers’ stated goals.

“83% of the overall participants improve their reading skills,” said Sandra Gray, Get Paid for Grades program manager. “All of the participants from Clearwater High School who increased their reading level also improved academic performance, proving the theory that increased literacy equals academic success.”

Tutors saw improvement in the participant’s attitudes as well as their academic performance. “I have seen students get on-board and make a commitment to improve their reading levels and help others to do the same” stats Kelly Fichtner, Get Paid for Grades Tutor.

Fichtner’s observations weren’t unique—as fellow tutor Jennifer Jakubzak reflected, “Students were actually finishing work to get better grades. I know this because other teachers approached me saying ‘wow this student is actually motivated to do something now!’”

Growing for Future Success

Clearwater High School paved the way for new schools to join Get Paid for Grades. The new Pinellas County high schools added to the program include:

  • Boca Ciega
  • Countryside
  • Largo
  • Dixie Hollins
  • Pinellas Park

The new high schools plan to emulate Clearwater’s efforts, while tweaking the program to meet the needs of their students.

“I am excited to begin the program. I have several ideas on how to get the right kids in and keep them on track” said Angelique McClain, lead tutor at Dixie Hollins High School. As Dr. Derrik Craun, Assistant Principal at Boca Ciega High School adds, “We are excited about this opportunity, it is a great experience for our students to see that hard work pays off!”

Everyone is excited about the new opportunities this expansion represents. Program organizers can’t wait to see the results!