Richmond County’s Communities in Schools is looking to help elementary students in their reading skills.
The organization has received a $5,000 grant from the Duke Energy Foundation to partially fund two North Carolina literacy corp members the organization is bringing on to help serve the students of Fairview Heights Elementary School and Monroe Avenue Elementary Schools. The total cost for the workers for the organization will be $7,800. The workers will start Aug. 11 and will last until the end of the school year.
“These two members will be working with the students on reading comprehension and writing skills,” said Fallon Brewington, executive director of the organization. “It will be really beneficial especially for the third-graders who now fall under the Read to Achieve law.”
The Read to Achieve program is part of the Excellent Public Schools Act that became law in July 2012. It officially applies to all schools for the 2013-14 school year. The program is focused specifically on reading proficiency in the third grade. The goal of the program is to help ensure students read at or above grade level by the end of the school year.
Brewington believed that the investment of the two literacy corp members will be time and money well spent. Brewington said that low literacy is directly linked to drop out rates and the purpose of the organization is to focus on drop out prevention.
The organization is still looking for applications for the two positions. The literacy corp program is part of AmeriCorps — a government program to engage people in intensive community service work. The entire application must be completed online through AmeriCorps.
The literacy corps member must be prepared to commit to the program for 10 to 12 months and complete 900 hours of service by July 31, 2015. The applicant must have a high school diploma or GED and must be at least 17 years old.
Brewington said those who are successfully chosen will be a total of $6,000 in living expenses and $2,775 in educational awards for further education.
“It is a wonderful incentive to get people involved in volunteer work,” Brewington said.
Those interested in applying can go to the Communities in Schools website at www.cisncrichmond.org, click on the “How You Can Help” link at the top and find the link under the tab “Half(Part)-Time Literacy Corp Members.” The deadline for applications is April 11.