Oaks Christian School celebrates the 10th anniversary of the OC Learning Center (OCLC) this year.
In 2012, over 15 tutors, including former Director of the Learning Center Jason McMaster, started the program with a handful of students each. These reliable tutors were placed in various locations throughout the high school building, and the official office was adjacent to the Office of Student Life. By the third year, the program had grown so much that they had to move to the Gerwien Family Learning Center, the building they currently occupy.
The program’s purpose was to support students in reaching their academic goals and provide the teachers with an extra layer of support. The OCLC started by providing 1:1 tutoring and their flagship program, Academic Training.
The Director of OCLC, Dr. Kelly Johnson, has dedicated herself to the program since the official launch in the 2012-13 school year.
“I can’t believe the Learning Center has been part of Oaks Christian School for 10 years! The growth of the Learning Center and knowing that it has impacted thousands of students’ lives over the years has been one of my greatest privileges. I am also proud that the Learning Center has been a great starting point for educators. There are currently 44 educators on faculty and staff that work in the Oaks Christian high and middle School, or online campuses who started in the Learning Center,” says Johnson.
Over the years, many changes have occurred with the OCLC. They have expanded their regional area to the surrounding community from grades K - college. Today the OCLC serves OCS students, non-OCS students, homeschool and public-school students.
Johnson says, “The decision was made to expand our services to the community because we wanted to serve as many students as possible.”
Additionally, they have extended their support services to include Educational Testing and Consulting, SAT/ACT prep, workshops, Executive Function support, and final exam review sessions. The pandemic’s effects resulted in new academic help possibilities, including remote sessions. These remote sessions have expanded their pool of tutors who live across the United States, including in Michigan, Georgia, and Washington DC.
Without the dedication of the tutors that put their heart and soul into helping their students find effective ways to understand their course subjects in a new light. The OCLC would not be what it is today!
Alumna Jacqueline Pinchuk nee Pare, Class of 2005, was one of those first tutors in 2012. Since she graduated from Oaks Christian, she had a bit of an upper hand when it came to tutoring her students because she had already gone through the same program. She loved how she could utilize her skills and pass down her knowledge to them.
Pinchuk explains, “Oaks has such a unique teaching style; I enjoyed being back in the whole environment. It was also tough to get a job after the recession, and I still had a few connections at Oaks. I discovered a real passion for education and teaching while I was there. It was the hardest job I’ve ever left.”
As Pinchuk started as a tutor for the first year, her last two years working for Oaks, she helped manage the program.
Associate Head of School Matt Northrop says, “What I love about the Learning Center is that we are all about helping our students truly thrive academically, socially, emotionally, and spiritually. It’s so much more than just grades. Minds, hearts, and souls are shaped, inspired, and encouraged each and every day by the amazing men and women in our Learning Center."
10 Year OC Learning Center Logo Designed by OCS Student Ava Aye