Frequently Asked Questions about the HELPS One-on-One Program
1. Is the HELPS Program considered an evidence-based practice?
Yes. Even more importantly, HELPS can also be considered research-validated. Click here to read more.
2. What are the overall benefits of the HELPS Program?
There are numerous benefits to this program, including feasible implementation for teachers, a strong research-base supporting its effectiveness, and free access to the most essential implementation materials. Click here to read more.
3. How is the HELPS Program different from other strategies or programs that are supposed to improve students’ reading fluency?
The list of benefits provides a good starting point as an answer to this question, because no existing strategy or program can claim all of the benefits shown from that list. The detailed descriptions of the HELPS Program throughout the Teacher's Manual should also show teachers how HELPS is different from other programs and strategies intended to improve students’ reading fluency.
4. Must all students learn how to read fluently to become successful readers?
Yes. Reading fluency is a necessary and critical stage of reading development. Click here to read more.
5. If a student improves her reading fluency, will she be better able to comprehend what she reads?
Yes. Strong research evidence shows that fluency and comprehension are closely related, and that improvements in fluency allow for better comprehension. Click here to read more.
6. How can I determine if a student in my class is having difficulties with reading fluency and would potentially benefit from the HELPS Program?
Oral Reading Fluency assessment data are useful for determining whether a student may have difficulties with reading fluency. Click here to read more.
7. Can I use the HELPS Program with any student from my class?
For teachers working with first, second, and third grade students, the simple answer to this question is “yes.” Click here to read more.
8. Can the HELPS Program be used with the Response-to-Intervention (RTI) model my school is using?
Yes. Research and development of the HELPS Program have strong implications for using HELPS as part of a RTI model. Click here to read more.
9. Can I use the HELPS Program as part of my small-group reading instruction?
Not yet. At the present time, only the procedures for the HELPS One-on-One Program have been thoroughly tested and evaluated. However, a forthcoming HELPS Program is being designed for specific use with small groups of students. Click here to read more.
10. Can parents or other school volunteers implement the HELPS Program with students in my school and/or classroom?
Yes. Any person who is appropriately trained to implement the HELPS Program can implement it. However, the student’s classroom teacher should also be informed about the student’s progress with HELPS over the course of its implementation. Click here to read more about options for training in the HELPS Program.
11. Can I train other teachers in my school to use the HELPS Program?
Yes, but before training others in the HELPS Program, teachers should first fulfill the requirements needed to be a Certified HELPS Trainer. The requirements to become a Certified HELPS Trainer are not extensive and they do not need to cost the teacher anything financially. Also, completion of the HELPS certification requirements will actually make training others easier because upon completion, Certified HELPS Trainers will receive additional materials to support training activities. Click here to read more.
12. Why is the HELPS Program offered for free?
There are many scientific and socio-cultural reasons why the HELPS Program is offered for free. Although it is available for free, HELPS has more research evidence supporting its effectiveness than hundreds of expensive reading programs that have been sold ubiquitously to schools and districts for decades. The HELPS Program Teacher's Manual provides additional information.
13. How can I receive donations from The Helps Education Fund (the non-profit foundation associated with HELPS Programs)?
A primary mission behind the development of HELPS Programs is to support students who need the most assistance. Click here for details about how to receive donations from The Helps Education Fund.
14. How can I contribute financially to The Helps Education Fund (the non-profit foundation associated with HELPS Programs)?
Individuals and groups can contribute by either (a) making a direct, tax-deductable donation to The Helps Education Fund, or (b) purchasing the pre-assembled HELPS Program materials from The Helps Education Fund. Both options meaningfully support the goals of The Helps Education Fund, and there are many advantages for teachers to purchase the pre-assembled HELPS Program materials.
15. How does The Helps Education Fund use its money?
A full 100% of the donations and proceeds from purchased HELPS materials go directly to The Helps Education Fund. This money is then used in a variety of ways to support students’ educational achievement both nationally and internationally. For example, HELPS Program materials and workshops are given free-of-charge to schools and teachers, and experienced reading consultants are sent to consult with schools about improving students’ overall reading curriculum. Further, a primary goal of The Helps Education Fund is to provide educational materials and services for teachers working in schools with large percentages of economically disadvantaged student. Click here to read more.