This is a consumer advisory: We telephoned Huntington (NJ), to explore the nature of their program, as it relates to assessing and tutoring high school math skills. We have an 11th grader that requires assistance. We were told that this was easily facilitated. An evaluation time was scheduled with the location nearest to us. We were told that a "three hour time slot" should be allotted for on our end.
We arrived at the office, where my child was taken into a small room and started on her evaluation. I was given a thorough assessment sheet to fill out that was quite impressive, and asked many questions regarding my view of my child's study skills and habits. My child was given the same one to fill out from her perspective.
After nearly four hours, I was told that my child had just started the "written portion" of the evaluation after having finished the "oral" piece. When I inquired as to the purpose of "writing skills and oral testing" for a "math" evaluation, I was told that this was just the final part of the "comprehensive evaluation." I was taken aback, since what I had contracted for, and what I had prepared my child for was math only.
Next, we were told we would need to return for the "parents only" part to discuss the findings of the evaluation. I was met with considerable resistance when I stressed that my child needed to be a part of this, since the findings related specifically to her needs. Administration agreed, reluctantly, saying they may still ask her to leave at some point. We just ignored this.
The meeting unfolded the next night with my husband in attendance (this was mandatory.) Now we understand why they prefer that the children do not attend. It appears that the way in which they go about testing and scoring, allows for a great degree of "negative" data to be collected. This in turn, can be presented to the parents in a skewed way to misrepresent "need". According to Huntington, my child desperately needed over 175 hours of tutoring, costing more than $8,000 and was scheduled to last for nine months at 4-6 hrs/week. Unfortunately, part of the math evaluation was given at the end of the testing period, when time was "up." Huntington, in turn marked all the remaining unanswered math question as "wrong" and factored this into the overall failing math score for our presentation/sales pitch.
Thankfully my child was not demoralized since she understands that their testing protocol lacks an accurate opportunity for skills to be assessed. Administration defended their "timed" tests as being reflective of how SAT's will be. We encouraged them to remember that we had requested ONLY an evaluation of skill and concepts, not speed.
Could not tell you how good their actual materials or methodology are. We cannot sign up with a company that engages in such sleazy business practices, trying to motivate families that are already vulnerable. They get a "F" in our book!