Siddharth Iyer spent eight Mays cramming for finals, first at Stuyvesant High School and then at Columbia University.Elite New York schools like Riverdale and Dalton hire teachers with Ph.Ds -- not Ed.Ds*-- in the fields they teach. Very likely, what has happened here is that these teachers have created advanced college-level courses high school students can't handle.
Nine years later, it is still crunch time for Mr. Iyer, a top tutor at Ivy Consulting Group, as his clients face a deluge of end-of-year exams. “He’s been prepping my son all week,” said the mother of one, a senior at Riverdale Country School in the Bronx, speaking on the condition that she not be named because Riverdale discourages both tutoring and talking to reporters.
“Prepping” — in this case for an oral exam in Riverdale’s notorious Integrated Liberal Studies, an interdisciplinary class laden with primary sources instead of standard textbooks — did not start the week before the exams, the mother pointed out. She said she had paid Mr. Iyer’s company $750 to $1,500 each week this school year for 100-minute sessions on Liberal Studies, a total of about $35,000 — just shy of Riverdale’s $38,800 tuition.
Last year, she said, her tutoring bills hit six figures, including year-round SAT preparation from Advantage Testing at $425 per 50 minutes; Spanish and math help from current and former private school teachers at $150 an hour; and sessions with Mr. Iyer for Riverdale’s equally notorious interdisciplinary course Constructing America, at $375 per 50 minutes.
Push for A’s at Private Schools Is Keeping Costly Tutors Busy
By JENNY ANDERSON
Published: June 7, 2011
We need micro-schools.
* When we looked at private schools 3 years ago, we found that the math teachers in nearly every private school had Masters degrees in education, not math.