How does Education Connection select students?
School Coordinators work closely with teachers, instructional staff and principal to identify high needs students.
Who can volunteer as a Literacy Partner?
Anyone who can read. The only requirements are they must be at least 18 years old, be cleared by district(s) background check, complete Education Connection training, and commit to at least 30 minutes a week to read with students.
What experience is required?
How to register to be a volunteer?
Education Connection volunteer registration for 2019-20 is closed, click HERE for the 2020-2021 Interest Form.
Official 2020-21 volunteer registration will open in August 2020.
I am not a native English speaker. Can I still volunteer?
Yes! However, we do require that you be fluent in English in order to best serve our students. Some schools may request native Spanish or other language speakers to read with students. We have training materials in Spanish.
I’ve already gotten a background check done in the past. Will I need to get another one?
Yes, district specific background checks are required each year.
How long does it take to get paired with a student?
Your start date for reading can take several days to several weeks, depending on a variety of scheduling factors such as training, background check completion, school schedules and student assessment data. Our goal, however, is to match you with a student as quickly as possible.
What if I can’t make it to volunteering?
Consistency is important with your students, and we understand that everyone has busy schedules. Let your teacher know ahead of time by email so that they can inform the student and if possible, try to reschedule to another day that week.
Do I have any choice in the age or gender of student I work with?
We match students based on school priority and schedule. Your School and Literacy Partner Coordinators are always available to answer questions and work with you to make sure that you are paired well and feel confident as a volunteer.
What kind of training will I receive?
Each year volunteers will attend training to learn more about Education Connection’s mission, model, and strategies. Volunteers are also required to attend FERPA (Federal Education Rights and Privacy Act) training and sign the Volunteer Commitment Pledge each school year. Live trainings are available at the beginning of each school year and are approximately one to two hours. Online training is available to those who are unable to attend live training.Online training involves watching a video and possibly downloading training materials.
What is the minimum time requirement to be a volunteer?
We ask that volunteers commit to at least thirty minutes per week.
It’s already the middle of the semester – can I still volunteer?
Volunteers can register on a rolling basis through mid February each school year. You can get started anytime
during the the registration window.
Will I keep my assigned student for the entire school year?
Yes. Although a student may appear to be “caught up” we want to make sure they are able to retain their growth and abilities. The school will monitor and track their progress throughout the year. This information will also help determine our program impact. It is possible that students move schools or may transition into another reading support program. If this occurs, new students will be matched with volunteers.