Practice Makes Perfect pairs under-achieving fourth graders with successful ninth grade students from their community. The high school students serve as role models to the fourth graders and provide one-on-one instruction to help them gain confidence before the school year begins. In turn, the ninth grade students receive preparation for college and learn from the college interns who supervise the program. In the program’s pilot year in 2011, the rising fifth grade students showed significant improvements in their math and reading abilities. “It was wonderful to speak to these students and see the positive impact of this innovative program on the young participants and their mentors,” said Simotas.