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The Mentoring Effect: Young People's Perspectives on the Outcomes and Availability of Mentoring - A national survey of young people reveals more than one in three never had a mentor and that the more risk factors a youth had, the less likely he or she was to have a naturally occurring mentor. On the other hand, researchers also found the more risk factors a young person had, the more likely he or she was to be in a structured mentoring relationship and the number of those relationships has increased in the last 20 years from 300,000 to 4.5 million.(Mary Bruce and John Bridgeland, Civic Enterprises for MENTOR, January 2014)...

School-Based Mentoring Programs: Using Volunteers to Improve the Academic Outcomes of Underserved Students - School-based mentoring programs work if the mentorship pair forms a relationship that the student rates as the “somewhat close” or better, according to this study. If the relationship is less close, the school-based mentoring program has no effect on the student's end-of-year outcomes. Researchers also found that school-based mentoring programs focused more heavily on academic activity had no larger academic effects than those where mentors engaged primarily in social activities. (Amanda Bayer, Jean Baldwin Grossman and David L. DuBois, MDRC, August 2013)...

What Works for Mentoring Programs: Lessons from Experimental Evaluations of Programs and Interventions - Child Trends looked at 19 mentoring programs for children and youth, including Big Brothers and Big Sisters, to see which worked by a variety of measures: mental health, social-emotional health, education, self-sufficiency, substance abuse, relationships, reproductive health and behavior problems. These are arranged in a nifty grid with “not found to work,” “mixed findings,” and “found to work.” Researchers found programs that helped with education, social skills and relationships were more effective than those directed at problems such as bullying or reducing teen pregnancy. Thirteen programs had at least one positive impact; three were found to be ineffective. (Child Trends, March 2013)...

Impact Evaluation of the U.S. Department of Education's Student Mentoring Program: Final Report - The student mentoring program is designed to fund grantees to enable them to provide mentoring to at-risk students in the middle grades. The ultimate goal of the program is to improve student acadeic and behavioral outcomes through the guidance and encouragement of a volunteer mentor. The main finding of the impact study was that there was no statistically significant impacts of the program for the sample as a whole on the array of student outcomes. There was, however, some scattered evident that impacts were heterogeneous across types of students. (IES/NCEE, March 2009)...

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