Tutors needed for South Okanagan reading program

Literacy Now South Okanagan-Similkameen providing reading assistance at 11 schools in the South Okanagan Similkameen

Volunteer tutor Arleen Maeck works with a Carmi Elementary School student through the One to One program

Volunteer tutor Arleen Maeck works with a Carmi Elementary School student through the One to One program

Just 90 minutes a week could make a big difference in local kids’ lives.

A local literacy group is seeking volunteers for its in-school reading program that pairs adult tutors with a trio of elementary school-aged children for 30 minutes a day.

“They’re kids that are, what we call, reluctant readers,” said Joan Chambers, outreach co-ordinator for Literacy Now South Okanagan-Similkameen.

So they’re not in a special education program, but are simply at a crucial age where intervention is important.

“Kids in Grades 1 to 3 are learning to read, and by Grade 4 you need to be able to read to learn. So if you haven’t mastered reading, you’re going to start falling further and further behind,” Chambers said.

The program operates in eight schools in the Okanagan Skaha School District and three schools in the Okanagan Similkameen School District. Each school requires at least 12 volunteers, who are usually retirees or parents of children at their school of choice.

New volunteers must attend a three-hour training session to learn how best to coach young readers, and will have to pass a criminal record check. The program will get underway in October once schools have had a chance to see which students need tutoring.

Volunteer tutor Linda Beaven is looking forward to another session.

“It was the most gratifying experience of feeling like you’re doing something positive and worthwhile that I’ve had in a long time,” said Beaven, a school trustee and retired Summerland high school teacher.

“The kids are so proud of themselves when they can read a story. I really noticed even in four months the improvement from where we started to where we finished in their confidence and capability of reading fluently and understanding what they were reading. It was amazing.”

For more information or to volunteer for the program, contact Chambers at 250-462-0636 or literacynowsos@gmail.com.


Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Toronto Public Health nurse Lalaine Agarin makes preparations at Toronto’s mass vaccination clinic, Jan. 17, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
3 deaths, 234 new cases of COVID-19 in Interior Health over the weekend

One death connected to outbreak at Kamloops’ Royal Inland Hospital, where 20 patients and 28 staff have tested positive

Head Brewer Kody Rosentreter, owner Wes Greve and taproom manager Lisa Deleo celebrated North Basin Brewing’s grand opening Jan. 22 and 23, 2020. (Contributed)
Osoyoos’ first microbrewery celebrates grand opening

The brewery hopes to show that the Okanagan is more than just wine country

Once complete, the Ambrosia in Keremeos will house more than 100 seniors, families and those on disability. (LSCSS photo)
Keremeos affordable housing suites coming along

Once complete, Ambrosia will house more than 100 people

Penticton Search and Rescue completed two rescues in succession of each other Saturday, Jan. 23, 2021 afternoon. (PENSAR / Facebook)
Penticton Search and Rescue members execute back-to-back rescues

PENSAR had barely completed their first rescue of the day when they received a second call

(THE NEWS – files)
Snowy days ahead for the Okanagan and Shuswap

The region could get up to 5 cm by Thursday

Crews with Discovery Channel film as an Aggressive Towing driver moves a Grumman S2F Tracker aircraft around a 90-degree turn from its compound and onto the road on Saturday, Jan. 23, 2021. It was the “most difficult” part of the move for the airplane, one organizer said. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
VIDEO: Vintage military plane gets towed from Chilliwack to Greater Victoria

Grumman CP-121 Tracker’s eventual home the British Columbia Aviation Museum on Vancouver Island

Heather Barker. (File)
Manslaughter charge laid in Vernon woman’s 2018 death

Shaun Ross Wiebe, 43, faces manslaughter and assault charges related to the death of Heather Barker

Zaudanawng “Jay-Dan” Maran in his Creston home. Hanging on the wall behind him is a logo of Kachin’s Manaw festival. Photo: Aaron Hemens
From Myanmar to Creston: The story of a refugee

In October 2007, Zaudanawng “Jay-Dan” Maran and his friends encountered a woman being sexually assaulted by two Myanmar soldiers.

Kamloops This Week.
48 COVID-19 cases and one death associated with outbreak at Kamloops hospital

One of the 20 patients infected has died, meanwhile 28 staff with COVID-19 are isolating at home

The City of Vernon is sending a letter to the provincial government to request that church be deemed an essential service amid the pandemic. (Brendan Shykora - Morning Star)
Vernon mayor scolded for revealing stance on making church essential

Coun. Scott Anderson calls Cummings’ actions ‘arrogant’

The scene of a serious crash on Highway 33 in Kelowna that killed one and severely injured two others on June 20, 2018. (File)
Driver found guilty of causing death, injury in 2018 Kelowna crash

Travis Ryan Hennessy will face sentencing at a later date

(Michael Rodriguez - Capital News staff)
Downtown stairwell fire suspicious, Kelowna RCMP say

Crews were called to Gotham Nightclub for a report of a stairwell fire

Rolling seven-day average of cases by B.C. health authority to Jan. 21. Fraser Health in purple, Vancouver Coastal red, Interior Health orange, Northern Health green and Vancouver Island blue. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
2nd COVID vaccine doses on hold as B.C. delivery delayed again

New COVID-19 cases slowing in Fraser Health region

Kelowna Mayor Colin Basran addresses media from the front steps of council chambers on March 23. (Michael Rodriguez - Capital News)
Kelowna, West Kelowna still looking to opt-out of speculation tax

Mayors say spec tax has missed the mark, revenue largely coming out of Canadians’ pockets

Most Read