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Free Math Tutoring Initiative Journey

Lions Club Math Class ArticleWritten by Vinay UpadhyayLeo President12thSunnyvale High School

When asked about the inspiration for the math class, I had to go back to my childhood, where I struggled with math. I often had to ask my sister Ekta for help, and there would be many days where simply her explaining something to me helped me understand it a lot better. While she wasn’t my teacher, she was someone who could help me and was readily available if I needed her. Fast forward to my sophomore year of high school. While reminiscing on these memories, I realized that not many kids within my community probably have older siblings who can help them or provide cost-based tutoring services. I had a perfect idea to give back to my community—a Free Math Tutoring Initiative.

It all started within my Nepali Hindu Mandir in Irving, where we only had about five students and three tutors in one 11×12-foot room, but that was all needed to get things going. Right off the bat, I was able to see kids from all different grade levels not only understand their school material better but also learn to advocate for their learning and vocalize what they were struggling with and what we, as the tutors, needed to do to help them. Another thing I noticed was the passion and vitality of the tutors. Every tutor who came and volunteered for 90 minutes every Sunday did so with the utmost devotion, care, and excitement. It was made evident through the way the students enjoyed being taught. While the whole idea of the program was for the students to learn, the tutors also learned a lot about selflessness and giving back to their community.

With a growing class size, new tutors joining, and even a relocation, the initiative to bring Free Math Tutoring flourished. Of course, with these successes, there is still more that can be achieved, and every Sunday has me thinking of what can be done to improve the 90 minutes we get with these students. I cannot wait to see how well the 2023-2024 school year takes off, and the students will greatly benefit from this project.