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Feb 8, 2010
By U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii School Support Services

SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii - Two online technology programs have recently been launched to help military families with tutoring services and homework assistance.

Student Online Achievement Resources, or SOAR, is a free Web site for students in grades 3-11 that helps families manage their children's education with various tutoring resources.

The SOAR program aims to "address the unique challenges facing military children and parents in our nation's public schools, while benefiting the overall student population," according to the SOAR?Web site.

The Military Impacted Schools Association sponsors SOAR in partnership with the University of Northern Iowa, The Princeton Review, and Skills Tutor.

With a focus on math, reading and language arts, SOAR takes a student to a virtual classroom to determine the student's academic strengths and weaknesses.

Parents can log onto www.SoarAtHome.org and fill out a one-page registration form. Students and parents will be directed to their specific links.

Students can take a test on any of the state learning standards, receive immediate feedback and be directed to a tutorial that will improve their skills, where needed.

Parents can monitor the progress of their child's work from anywhere in the world. Also, parents are provided with resource materials that will assist their children in areas where they may need help.

Information about state education systems and schools is available, as well as locations of schools located in foreign locations.

"Study Strong," available at www.tutor.com/army allows students in grades K-12 to work with a certified professional tutor online, 24/7, to get help with homework, studying, test preparation and resume writing.

Everything is live, one-on-one, anonymous and free. A helpful video can be viewed on the home page that explains how the process all works, after completing the one-page registration form before starting work as an actual tutor.

The tutors are teachers, college professors and graduate students who provide services in all grade levels of math, science, English and social studies. Every tutor is background checked by a third party security firm and certified through Tutor.com.

Conner Dooley, a freshman at Radford High School, said he "likes Study Strong because it's easy to use, it's helpful and it's not complicated.

"It's always available no matter what time it is," he continued. "I have only used it for math, but would not hesitate to use it for another subject if I needed to."

Both Web sites provide free resources to assist with the many challenges faced by military students, to help students improve in their academic endeavors and to ease the transition of moving from one military installation to another and starting over again in a new school.