WEAKLEY COUNTY (September 15) – Weakley County Schools, in conjunction with the Charger Foundation, the Weakley County Reconciliation Project and the Weakley County Young Professionals has added a tutoring option to the recently-launched Weakley CARES volunteer program.
Based on the understanding that “it takes a village to raise our youth,” leadership from the volunteer organizations – along with Krystle Smith, the Monitored Distance Education (MDE) coordinator for Weakley County Schools – crafted Weakley CARES: Village Tutoring for utilizing volunteers who want to provide school work assistance. Volunteers can choose from assisting MDE teachers and students who opted for the online platform during the COVID-19 pandemic or providing in-person help and mentoring at Martin’s Enrichment Academy.
Rachel Lovell, president of Weakley County Young Professionals; Courtney Echols, member of the Charger Foundation Board; Ashley Bynum, Associate Athletic Director, UT Martin Athletics; and Joyce Washington, co-chair of Weakley County Reconciliation Project quickly formed a team to respond to one of the greatest needs facing Weakley County Schools.
“We have a solid program for our students who have chosen to remain at home during the COVID-19 crisis, but it is online and our teachers are having to monitor the program as well as take care of their in-class students,” noted Smith, who has been customizing the personal learning platform to accommodate the district’s needs since she assumed her role in August.
“Our commitment to personal instruction remains strong so the help that the Village Tutoring volunteers will provide is a way to ensure that students have a type of ‘homework hotline’ they can depend on. Our teachers are looking forward to helping further serve our students at home,” she added.
Washington was the first to approach School Board Chair Steve Vantrease with an offer to do what was needed in what she agrees are “unprecedented times.” Weakley CARES was in the formation stages, when she learned of the MDE program. She then moved quickly to organize fellow community advocates.
“We are a community,” she said. “And these children are our future. It’s important that we try to come together, not for one child but for all our kids.”
A second aspect of We CARES: Village Tutoring is the chance to make an in-person commitment on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 3:15 – 4:15 p.m. at Martin Enrichment Academy. These volunteers will need to complete a background check.
All Weakley CARE volunteers who will be working with students in person must pay for and complete a background check. Those in the Village Tutoring option that will be working solely with MDE students virtually do not have to complete that step.
“Remotely tutoring our students who are still very much a part of our schools can mean a smoother transition back to the classroom once they are ready to return,” said Randy Frazier, director of Weakley County Schools. “We are grateful to each of the organizations that see a need and are ready to respond.”
For details on Weakley CARES: Village Tutoring, visit www.weakleyschools.com and click on the News tab.