Ector County Independent School District

Odessa, Texas

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Transformative Learning Gains, Starting with an Outcomes-Based Agreement

In Odessa, Texas, the Ector County Independent School District (ISD) recognized the early signs of pandemic-driven learning loss and was committed to mitigating disruption. This kind of foresight is exceptional in the context of learning trends seen across the US.

According to the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), for instance, the global pandemic significantly impacted American students’ reading and math abilities. Overall, 9-year-olds’ math scores decreased by seven points, and their reading scores fell by five. Those struggling before campuses closed in March 2020 experienced the steepest learning loss.

In Ector County ISD, however, district leaders knew that an evidence- and research-based approach was critically important; the district adopted FEV Tutor in the Fall of 2020. Superintendent Scott Muri, Ed.D., had used FEV Tutor in a previous role at another district and turned to it when it became clear that students needed additional support during the pandemic.

“The pandemic obviously created significant learning challenges for us. One of the things we wanted to do to recover during 2021 was provide high-dosage, high-quality tutoring,” Muri explained. “However, we don’t have tutors available in our community. We simply cannot fill that kind of vacancy in our district. But our kids deserve a strategy that, when done right, will yield great results.”

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With a student population that’s 59% At Risk in an area where 62% of families experience poverty, Ector County ISD knew that its students would suffer the negative effects of pandemic-related learning loss at a higher rate than many other districts.


Using ESSER funds, the district contracted with six companies to provide 1:1 tutoring for 6,000 students. That list was later whittled down to three and continues to include FEV Tutor’s high-impact online tutoring platform.


Students using FEV demonstrated accelerated growth rates relative to non-participants in math and reading. Students who participated in higher dosages of FEV Tutor showed additional gains. Those who participated in recommended dosages of tutoring (i.e., FEV Tutor Champions) demonstrated 48% accelerated growth relative to non-participants in math and 107% accelerated growth relative to non-participants in reading.