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High school friends start free '425 Tutoring' program to help younger students

Three childhood friends saw a great need for help with remote learning so they tapped their kindergarten teacher for help and got to work.

There’s a free and growing resource available to students who may be looking for a little help with homework. 

425 Tutoring wasn’t founded by former teachers or local business leaders. It's the product of three childhood schoolmates who simply wanted to help when school was suddenly virtual. 

Miki Kusunose, Forrest Williams and Aiden Silvestri have been the best of friends since they were playground partners at Newcastle Elementary. They attend different high schools now, but remain close. So teaming up for a virtual effort was a natural fit. 

They all noticed younger students struggling with online learning and decided they had the knowledge and passion to help. But how? 

Back in March, they decided to reach out to the authority — their kindergarten teacher Ms. Cathy Andrews. They offered their help with tutoring and started working with the PTSA to assist some students. 

One online posting changed things overnight. 

A posting about their tutoring landed on Nextdoor and the demand skyrocketed. They quickly gained 80 students, so the three friends expanded by reaching out to friends and other high school groups for support. 

Eventually, the group formed a Washington state non-profit. Currently, 425 Tutoring has over 350 students working with over 160 volunteer tutors who are all carefully selected through interviews. The tutors can help students K-12 with most subjects, and specifically aid in math and science. 

This impressive collection of diverse student tutors is a 100% free service and offers group sessions online. They believe the collaborative environment brings out the best in students. Whether you have a student who could use help, or an older student who may be a great tutor, you can learn more and register at www.425tutoring.org.

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