Are Math Centers Worth It?

Are Math Centers Worth It?

I live in a small area, but learning centers such as Sylvan are popping up and in urban area curriculum specific centers are everywhere. Everyone knows that math isn't easy for most people. We struggle with it for various reasons, so parents are flocking to these centers, hoping to give their children an extra edge.

There are a ton of different programs out there. Some focus on practice and repetitions, while other use less traditional methods. They all have one thing in common – the cost money. This is perfectly fine for people with the extra income, but in these tough economic times that's not many. Yet, dozens if not hundreds of students in large cities are receiving the help of these centers. Is it worth it?

The evidence is confusing to say the least. Isn't this the exact same thing they can receive at home for free. Are parents so overwhelmed and busy with life and work that they can't sit down for an hour or so every couple of days and help out their children with math?

I am not saying places like this are worthless. There are children with learning disabilities, delays and difficulties that can really get a lot out of the extra help and teaching. The bulk of the students in these math learning centers could get the same benefit by sitting their parents. As a father who hopes to be able to provide help to his children, I question the efficacy of these centers as a whole.