The SSSIO of Fremont, California started the SAI Math Academy as a weekly math tutoring project in 2018. It has now expanded to six elementary schools in the Hayward Unified School District, where 50 high-school volunteers, mentored by 15 adults, tutor 150-200 students. Before the pandemic, the tutors met students at their respective schools every Saturday for two hours; but during the pandemic, the program became virtual. Most of the students come from low-income families and benefit from the assistance offered by the SAI Math Academy. Student volunteers also learn valuable skills such as time management, public speaking, and leadership qualities.
SSSIO volunteers offer various enrichment activities. One such event is Values Day where students learn about the five human values (Truth, Right Conduct, Peace, Love, and Non-Violence). It is an outdoor event that features fun and engaging activities showcasing the importance of practicing human values. Also, a Coding and Robotics Class and a project on community gardens were led by SSSIO volunteers to develop interest in this field and environmental awareness, respectively.
After implementing the SAI Math Academy at Southgate Elementary, the school saw a 28% increase in the average Math scores. The principal of the school was extremely grateful for all the support, stating that the SAI Math Academy “[made] such a difference in the lives of our children”. The SAI Math Academy has also been requested to support an additional six schools in the next school year.