Learning how to succeed in life often begins with learning how to read. Once a student can master how to read, they can read to learn almost any subject or topic.
"We say through the end of third grade, children are learning how to read, after that they are reading to learn," says Lizzie Morris, program manager of Minnesota Reading Corps
and Minnesota Math Corps
at Crestview Elementary in Brooklyn Park. "We really know that reading is the foundation of every other subject."
Literacy tutors with Minnesota Reading Corp help students all over the state. Hilary Roe has been tutoring students for the past four years.
"It’s probably the most rewarding things I’ve done because I feel like I’m saving lives because if these kids didn’t learn how to read, then they aren’t going to learn the rest and that’s a bleak outlook," says Hilary Roe.AmeriCorps
is now recruiting more tutors. They need approximately 1,700 literacy and 300 math tutors throughout the state, with as many as 1,000 of those tutors in Twin Cities schools. Through this program, Brooklyn Park needs 41 tutors and Brooklyn Center needs 14.
"This is our largest need in more than 14 years in Minnesota. Every year we get a little bit bigger," says Morris. "More schools are looking for our services and children all over the state of Minnesota need our support."
Tutors are trained and are paid. They commit to 11 months of service, during which they earn $574 (full time) every two weeks and an education award of up to $5,815 to help pay student loans or pay for further education at the end of their service. Full-time tutors are also eligible for health insurance and child care assistance.
"Tutors come from all walks of life," says Morris. "We have high school graduates who are looking to take a gap year, college grads who are interested in pursuing an education, parents who are looking to get back in the workforce or just folks who are looking to make a difference in the community," says Morris.
Shannon Slatton, firstname.lastname@example.org
on Twitter: @sslatton