BoostDesk! Online-Schoolwork/Homework Assistance

socially distant edboost campWith a new season of online school upon us, every child needs a proper desk to sit at --and ideally that desk will be stocked with reliable Internet and a tutor to help students understand a new concept or review an old one. Starting on the first day of instruction, and for however long LAUSD is conducting school online, EdBoost is offering BoostDesk, our in-center online-schoolwork/homework assistance.

Who Can Enroll in BoostDesk?

BoostDesk is open to students entering grades K-8.  If you have a high school student and are looking for support, one-on-one tutoring will probably be more effective.  

What are BoostDesk's Hours?

Monday through Friday, there will be two shifts of BoostDesk per day, from 9am-noon, and from 12:30pm-3:30pm.  We will take the time between shifts to clean, but students who sign up for both shifts (a 6.5 hour day) may stay and eat lunch between noon and 12:30.

When will BoostDesk begin?

BoostDesk will begin on the first day of instruction at LAUSD.  For now, we presume that that date will be 8/18. However, if that date gets pushed, or if LAUSD turns that first week of school into a material-pick-up/parent-orientation/teacher-training kind of week, we will begin when actual classroom instruction begins. 

What will a Day in BoostDesk Look Like? 

While at EdBoost, BoostDesk students can log into their Zoom classes, lessons, and meetings with their teachers, and work on schoolwork and homework.  If students run out of schoolwork/homework, we will provide a range of academic, socially distance activities they can do (e.g., reading, touch typing, math practice). 

We will maintain, at most, a 6:1 student/instructor ratio.  Groups of 5-6 students and instructor will be kept within a room or set of rooms, with a bathroom, with limited mingling among groups. We will group children by grade and, if we find that there are days when students, as a group, have less instruction or less work, we will organize some grade-appropriate group instruction.  California guidelines currently suggest 180 (Kindergarten), 230 (1st-3rd grade), or 240 (4th grade and up) instructional minutes per day.

How Much does BoostDesk Cost?

BoostDesk will be priced like summer camp, at \$175/week for 3 hour days or \$350/week for 6 hour days. We have scholarships available for families who needs financial assistance (please fill out the scholarship application to the right).  Enrolling for the week gives your child full access to come to the center during those 3 hours daily.  Students will not be required to attend, but we will not be able to offer refunds or prorations to students who do not attend their full 3 hours daily (think of BoostDesk like a gym membership -- use it as much or as little as you like). 

How will BoostDesk Conform to COVID-19 Safety Measures?

Each child must bring his or her own lunch/snacks/water bottle, school supplies, and, ideally, computer or Ipad for online school (schools are supposed to be providing devices for students who need them). All students must bring headphones. We do have some desktops and Chromebooks here for students to use, but would prefer to minimize device sharing as much as possible.   Students will maintain a particular desk for their 3 hours here and will not share supplies.  We will wipe down all high contact areas before each 3 hour shift. We will have someone come in to do a thorough center cleaning 2-3 times a week (details pending). 

All staff and students will have their temperatures checked (by infrared) at the door before entering.  Additionally, all parents will be asked to answer quick health related questions at drop off: has child had a fever? has child had a cough? has child been feeling ill?  Students who are ill or have a fever will not be allowed to attend. 

All students will be required to wear a mask while at BoostDesk (though, of course, they will have to lower masks while eating lunch if they stay over the lunch period). 

Why is EdBoost Uniquely Suited to Run a Program to Assist with Online School?

BoostDesk is built upon our regular academic homework/school project assistance program, in which tutors work with small groups of students after school to help them complete their homework correctly and with understanding. EdBoost tutors answer questions, make sure homework is done right, push students to do their work thoroughly, and help fill in needed skill gaps. Tutors are trained and experienced in multi-tasking and the classroom management required to keep a group of students working (even when they are all working on different assignments). All tutors are either college graduates or currently enrolled in a 4-year college or university.  All have passed EdBoost's K-8 Tutor Certification Test (which has about a 50% pass rate among tutor applicants). They have very strong academic skills.  And, if a tutor has any K-8 knowledge gaps (how to divide with mixed numbers, for instance), they receive training to fill those gaps before they start working. Tutors are also experienced working with a wide variety of student (including those with learning differences) and with the LAUSD curriculum.  They are familiar with Common Core and typical teaching/schoolwork practices.  All BoostDesk tutors will be supervised by a Coordinating Tutor as well as one of EdBoost's senior staff (Tiffani or Sunny). 

How will EdBoost Manage the Technology Requirements of Online School?   

EdBoost will invest in both additional wifi extenders and hot spots to ensure that students have adequate Internet to attend their classes and complete their work. EdBoost will work hard in the first few days of BoostDesk to get the technology configured properly to meet demand. 

How Do Students Sign up for BoostDesk?

Due to social distancing requirements, space in BoostDesk is limited.  We ask that parents use the form below to enroll their students. For now, we are accepting 12 students and then putting students on the waitlist.  If there is sufficient demand, we can increase staffing and space. Once you fill out the form, you will be forwarded to a payment page, where you can make a deposit (two weeks of BoostDesk for each student). Once you have signed up and paid the deposit, you will have a spot reserved, starting on the first day of LAUSD instruction. We will likely invite parents before that to come in, by appointment, and iron out any  technological wrinkles. 

Deposits:

For one 3-hour slot (9-noon or 12:30-3:30), \$350 per child.

For one 6.5-hour slot (9-3:30), \$700 per child.

Deposits cover the first two weeks of BoostDesk.  The balance for the first 4-week block will be due on the first day of BoostDesk (the first week of LAUSD instruction).

What are the Other Details?

We seem to come up with new details daily.  In the next few weeks, we will follow up with registration paperwork and more information and gather any information you are receiving from your students' schools.  Please feel free to email us with any questions you may have (tiffani@edboost.org or sunny@edboost.org). 

Perhaps the most important detail is that we, like everyone else, are waiting on more information from LAUSD and individual schools.  As a small program, we hope that we will be able to be nimble enough to adjust if plans are not what we expect (for instances, needing to begin the program earlier to accommodate 9am Zoom classes).  If you sign up for a morning slot, but end up needing an afternoon slot, we will do our best to find someone who can switch with you, to accommodate that schedule.  We truly want to make this a good experience for all families and students. 

These are the details we have so far:

*To reserve a spot in BoostDesk, we require two-weeks payment in advance. Because we must reserve staffing in advanced, deposits are non-refundable. In case of federal, state, county, or city mandated shut-down, deposits will be refunded minus a 10% processing fee. 

*BoostDesk will be billed in advanced, in 4-week blocks.  We will provide a payment calendar shortly. We will request that you provide a credit card authorization form. 

*Students will be required to sign a behavior contract upon arrival and abide by that contract to remain enrolled. 

*BoostDesk will follow the LAUSD holiday schedule.  BoostDesk will be closed on all LAUSD holidays. There is no proration for days off due to LAUSD holidays.  We will be closed for but not bill for the week of the Thanksgiving Break.

Use the links below to sign up.   To enroll more than one child, enter the number of registrations in the "spaces" box), to keep counts accurate.  Then you can enter both students' names and grades in the boxes provided.  

If you want to sign up for both slots of BoostDesk, register for the AM Slot first, then you can click a link to sign up for the PM Slot, before you are directed to the deposit payment page.