Tutoring Online Project in the Dominican Republic (Year 2)
School closures and distance learning have led to large learning losses and increased dropout rates, especially among the most vulnerable. In the absence of compensatory actions, the pandemic poses the risk of exacerbating low learning levels and increasing current inequalities. According to a recent report by the World Bank, the share of students below minimum levels of proficiency in the Dominican Republic (DR) is expected to increase from 79% to 91% as a result of the pandemic. The Tutoring Online Project (TOP) aims to address these losses by offering personalized tutoring to disadvantaged students in the DR. This intervention will be implemented by JPAL-LAC with the support of the Ministry of Education in public secondary schools in the country. Leveraging partnerships with local universities, TOP will recruit 800 volunteer university students and randomly match them with students from disadvantaged backgrounds in around 100 public schools. With IGI funding in 2021, a pilot version of this project was successfully implemented in the country during the Summer of 2021, after finding positive results in the Italian context. Based on positive findings from these two experiences, the project is currently being piloted in Brazil and Uruguay with the aim to build a replicable model for more settings.