Friday, September 29, 2006

Now Even The Teenage World is Flat

Having trouble in your math class? Physics problem sets getting you down? Behind on that term paper?

Just do what most American companies are doing these days. Outsource your Homework.

For $2.50 an hour (or $100 per month for unlimited hours) you can receive live, personal, online tutoring from a trained educator holding at least a Master's degree in your field of study through TutorVista of Bangalor India. This obviously spells trouble for the American companies struggling to demand rates of over $40 an hour.

"We've changed the paradigm of tutoring," said Krishnan Ganesh, founder and chairman of TutorVista, which offers subjects ranging from grammar to geometry for children as young as 6 years old to adults in college.

"It's not that the U.S. education system is not good. It's just that it's impossible to give personalized education at an affordable cost unless you use technology, unless you use the Internet and unless you can use lower-cost job centers like India," he said over a crackly Internet-phone line from Bangalore. "We can deliver that."

Many of the tutors have masters degrees in their subjects, said Ganesh. On average, they have taught for 10 years. Each undergoes 60 hours of training, including lessons on how to speak in a U.S. accent and how to decipher American slang.

"It's made the biggest difference. My daughter is literally at the top of every single one of her classes and she has never done that before," said Robison, a single mother from Modesto.

"I like to tell people I did private tutoring every day for the cost of a fast-food meal or a Starbucks' coffee," Robison said. "We did our own form of summer school all summer."

What does it say about our country that India can do a better job educating American kids than we can, and for one 1/15th the cost to boot?

And I bet that even with kids benefiting from international economics, the Teachers' Unions will complain within the year because money that could be going into their failing system is heading offshore.

More on this topic here.

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