For middle, high school and college students, I meet with both the student and their parents, together or separately, depending on the circumstances. In the first stages, I gather basic information about the student, their family, and relevant developmental, medical and educational history.

We talk about the student’s background, life experiences, the issues relevant to their learning: difficulties they face and strengths they celebrate.

For all students, my assessment includes an informal reading inventory, a writing sample, a review of academic work and study habits.  Together with the student, we develop a results-driven plan of action that addresses the student’s unique issues and needs.

The objective of this plan of action is to develop an understanding of how they learn (metacognition), the obstacles they face and strategies to overcome these challenges.

An important component of this early stage of the process is to instill in the student the belief that they can succeed, and an understanding of the ways they can achieve their success.

Many of our students have had the benefit of Dara’s work and I will say this: she knows what she is doing, both in terms of pedagogy and, most importantly, communicating with young people. In addition, she is always personable and professional. In thirty-seven years of teaching I’ve worked with a plethora of tutors and educational professionals who assist students on an individual basis. Therefore, I feel qualified to grade them. Dara Berger A+.
— David | Teacher | Dean of Students