Tuesday, October 31, 2006

No long distance teaching for New York City

You can't outsource education, says New York City. Socratic Learning, a company providing online tutoring services with teachers from India had bagged a $2 million a year contract to train 2000 children under a federal "No Child Left Behind" program.

New York City insisted on teachers being fingerprinted (which they did, in an Indian police station), and prints verified by the FBI, which was done.

But New York City wanted the teachers to be physically present, and for the company to provide them U.S. Social Security numbers, which aren't given to non-residents. Is this the end of tutor-outsourcing as we know it?

Maybe they can turn around and offer that to Indian students.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

first of all, the reason they got investigated in the first place was because they were giving incentives to students/families who used their services. on average they received over $2K per student enrolled and then they would offer a free computer to all students/family that agree to use their program over the other qualified programs. NCLB Title I Funding rules strictly prohibt tutoring firms to provide benefits or fringe benefits for choosing their program over others.

once they breached this rule, obviously as investigation on the project was conducted, and lo and behold we find out that the company was fraudulent in more than one way. they were also lying about where their tutors are based from.

personally, i have no preference on where the tutors are based as long as they are successful in increasing student aptitude and achievement, however, when dealing with government contracts, or any contract for that matter, you must adhere to the terms of agreement and pay close attention to ensure that there are no breakdowns.

these poor blokes lied and stole and never did provide any sort of apology.