Do you believe that literacy is a human right?
ABOUT THE LITERACY LAB
The Literacy Lab is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to provide children from marginalized communities with individualized reading instruction to improve their literacy skills, leading to greater success in school and increased opportunities in life. We partner with school districts to add capacity in high-need schools to close the literacy gap for children before third grade.
Since 2009, The Literacy Lab has provided evidence-based literacy interventions to more than 30,000 children from marginalized communities to master early literacy skills. By embedding rigorously trained tutors in pre-K classrooms and elementary schools to tutor students of color from pre-K through third grade, The Literacy Lab strives to create a full six-year continuum of support for young readers.
The Literacy Lab recognizes that ensuring all students have the chance to read proficiently is an urgent and critical need. Our approach is to provide Pre-K classrooms and elementary schools with evidence-based literacy intervention and full-time literacy tutors to implement the model. With the help of assessment tools, their coaching teams, and The Literacy Lab’s program staff, our tutors help their students become successful readers.
If you want to make a difference in the lives of children while gaining professional skills and experience in the fields of education, nonprofit, and social justice, a service term with The Literacy Lab may be the perfect opportunity for you!
WHAT YOU WILL DO
Tutors serve full-time for an entire academic year. At their school site, tutors implement Reading Corps specific early literacy interventions for Pre-K and K-3 students. Tutors also conduct weekly progress monitoring and work with a team of coaches to make data-informed decisions to ensure each child is on track to read proficiently. Tutors are a part of the school community and work to build strong relationships with students, teachers, and other staff. In addition, tutors participate in community-based volunteer opportunities and ongoing professional development sessions. Tutors are placed at school sites with one to three other tutors.
For the K-3 program, tutors will be placed in one school for the whole school year. They’ll have a caseload of 15-18 students who need targeted reading support. Using Reading Corps specific early literacy interventions, tutors see their students every day, one-on-one for 20 minutes. Tutors build a relationship with each student and are able to zoom in on areas where students might be struggling.
For the Pre-K program, tutors are placed in one classroom for the entire school year. Tutors are the literacy resource and will collaborate closely with the teacher and assistant teacher. Using Reading Corps specific early literacy interventions, tutors will be singing songs with the whole class, reading books and practicing vocab with small groups, and doing one-on-one work with a handful of students who need extra support to be Kindergarten-ready.
At a minimum, a tutor must:
- Serve in a full-time capacity, approx. 8 hours/ day, M-F
- Commit to a full service term (January - June)
- Implement feedback from coaches and program staff
- Utilize Reading Corps specific data-based and scripted curriculum
- Participate in required professional developments, community service days, ongoing training, and other occasional required Literacy Lab events and meetings in the late afternoon/early evening
Over the course of their service term, tutors receive:
- A modest living allowance (MO/VA $1,600, MA/MD $1,800, DC $1,900)
- Federal student loan forbearance
- Prorated Segal Education Award upon completion of service
- Health insurance, with all premiums covered by The Literacy Lab
- Access to SNAP benefits, as well as Childcare and Employee Assistance Programs
- Transferable professional development that complements your service year experience
COMMITMENT TO EQUITY, IMPACT, AND ANTI-RACISM
The education system in the United States continues to be deeply impacted by a long history of unjust policies that socio-economically disinvest in communities of color. The Literacy Lab’s mission is to address inequities by providing students of color with individualized reading instruction to improve their literacy skills. We believe that when young people of all races and from different economic brackets have equitable access to robust educational and professional development opportunities, they will be more successful as adults, and their communities will be more resilient and prosperous.
In addition to fulfilling our mission of ensuring that our students have the resources they need to be successful readers, we are proud to support diverse cohorts of tutors each year. We know that our cohorts are stronger when our tutors represent a number of different communities, cultures, religious backgrounds, genders, and sexual orientations. Because of the systemic history of racial inequity in the teaching profession, we’re dedicated to creating opportunities for emerging educators of color. Research shows that students who have a teacher that looks like them early in their educational career are more likely to graduate from high school and attend college. As over 90% of the students we serve are children of color, we know that having a representative cohort is crucial for positive long-term effects on our students.
The Literacy Lab is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Reasonable accommodations are provided upon request. Required physical/sensory job functions are provided upon request.
Explore our Year at a Glance, which includes detailed position overviews (https://drive.google.com/file/d/178yVeG7OKBMvpaI_EMeBj8-snwYOCKne/view?usp=sharing).
Review our FAQs (https://theliteracylab.org/tutorexperience/).
Submit your application through The Literacy Lab’s website (https://theliteracylab.org/apply-americorps-2023/).
At a minimum, all tutors must:
- Be at least 17 years old
- Have a high school diploma, GED, or equivalency
- Have served no more than 3 previous AmeriCorps terms (no prior AmeriCorps experience necessary)
- Be a US citizen, national, or permanent resident
DACA recipients are unfortunately not eligible to apply. Candidates must not be registered, or be required to register, on any sex offender registry.