About a year ago my daughter Leigh Gillis (MEd) and I joined forces to combine our educational knowledge and experience. At that time, we launched Education Advantage (www.educationadvantage.ca) our private educational consulting and coaching company.
At that time of our launch, our focus was primarily on providing academic assessment services using standardized tools to assess students' skills in reading, math, and written language. We also provided customized learning plans and tutoring to complement student strengths and address skill gaps. Like most entrepreneurs we’ve learned a lot in our first few months of business. We’ve learned that students are indeed showing gap areas, specifically in reading and math. Much of this has been discussed in the news and amongst parents and educators over the last year. While the pandemic
is largely blamed for these issues, we know that they have been broiling under the surface for many years. Our key take-away from conducting student assessments is that in every case these learning gaps cause stress for students and parents.
This presence of increased stress in students has sparked our shift in business focus. As long-time educators we know that regardless of a student's learning/skills gap, a key factor to effectively supporting their development is helping them to reduce stress and anxiety. This is becoming a significant aspect of our business; that is, coaching students toward progress and success through resiliency building and development of self-efficacy. We believe that students who are able to grow in these areas will also gain skills that help them successfully reduce stress and anxiety, as well as overcome learning gaps.
While offering academic assessment and tutoring are still a part of our valued services, we are encouraged by the gains we see in schools pertaining to inclusive practices and the renewed focus on the science of reading – both of these gains signal a return to “evidence-based” approaches to education in general. Flexibility is key to evolving businesses everywhere and although we are making a slight course correction, our mission remains the same - to help students succeed.
I’ll share more about the tools and services we're adding in my next posting. Join us and watch for our Education Advantage developments!