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Local tutoring business ready to help students pick up where they left off

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Posted at 4:44 PM, Mar 18, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-18 18:45:34-04

EAST AURORA, N.Y. (WKBW) — With students in Western New York being sent home with weeks worth of schoolwork due to the Coronavirus outbreak, many parents find themselves overwhelmed—trying to help their child stay on-top of their education and succeed.

“If I didn’t have the background that I have in education, I would be extremely overwhelmed,” said Sarah Barber.

Barber is a mother of three school-aged children, and owner of Shaw Academic Institute in East Aurora. The business has provided homeschooling, face-to-face tutoring, and educational support to numerous Western New York school districts and students for the past five years.

As Coronavirus concerns have shut down schools in the area for the foreseeable future, Barber says her business is ready to step in and help.

“As the Coronavirus entered our community, we rapidly started expanding our online education opportunities,” Barber said. “We’re hoping to launch our virtual classroom to the public on Monday of next week.”

Barber says her tutors mirror their computer with the student, similar to FaceTime, where they can work one-on-one.

Possibly the biggest problem Barber sees with school shut downs is students keeping up with their learning, and being able to receive the help they need. Because of this, she says her business is ready to step in where they left off with their curriculum.

“Since we work with multiple districts in the area as well as private schools, we have a pretty good idea of where everyone’s curriculum is,” she said. “Therefore, we’re going to be providing live online lessons based on an approximate place where they left off.”

She says the goal is for each hour to be a different lesson, like Algebra II or Biology.

“We’ve had tons of calls from parents frustrated already the first day with packets being sent,” she said. “Many don’t know how to do the geometry, algebra or biology and they’re needing help, and we are here.”

You can reach The Shaw Academic Institute by calling 716-508-0063 or e-mailing