CRANFORD - While offering a peer tutoring space for writing is common among colleges, it is scarce to find such a place in high schools.

Cranford High School is one of only a few high schools in America to offer a writing tutor program where the tutors who have been trained through a two-part class can tutor underclassmen who want help with their writing.

The school also offers general peer tutoring for various subjects, but the Writing Center is unique in that the tutors are trained in the art of tutoring to create a better writer as a whole as opposed to helping the writer simply edit one paper. This ability is fostered through the formal training class mentioned earlier which the tutors take for school credits. 

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The goal of the writing center is to build the writer’s confidence and give them the tools to better their papers independently. According to the Writing Center’s Mission Statement, “The tutors will build the confidence of young writers and enhance their independence as they craft clear, effective essays in all modes of writing.”

The Writing Center at CHS came to fruition through the hard work of the involved English teachers, Kathleen Shaw, Jennifer Hilborn, and Nicole Conter, after they offered to help when English Supervisor Susan Ritter brought it up. They studied several guides to peer tutoring in writing and went to the Seton Hall and Rutgers Writing Centers to observe how they run in order to perfect one at CHS.

Mrs. Shaw, who teaches the Writing Center Tutorial class for the training tutors, said, “The CHS Writing Center provides opportunities for both the tutors and the tutees to grow as writers and to learn from each other. Tutors provide valuable feedback and guidance to foster the growth of their peers' writing skills.”

Students can book a 30 minutes session in the writing center during lunch or before and after school for help with any essay for an English class and they will be met with a proficient and efficient writing tutor to help meet the needs of the writer on a one on one setting this is not easily attained in a large class.

For more information on Cranford High School's Writing Center Peer Tutoring, you can reach Ms. Ritter by email at ritter@cranfordschools.org.