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September 9, 2019

Back to School: Reading Partners Baltimore calls for more community volunteers

Seeking local volunteers for the 2019-20 school year 

One hour can empower! In the 2019-20 school year, Reading Partners aims to match 750 community volunteers with 600 elementary students struggling to read in Baltimore. By tutoring a student one-on-one for as little as an hour a week, volunteers can make an impact that can quite literally alter the course of a child’s educational experience and life.

[My student shared] that he really liked reading now. I attribute this [not only] to the Reading Partner curriculum but also to the special one-on-one tutoring time that affords the students an opportunity to be heard and to know that someone really cares that the student improves their reading!

said a Reading Partners Baltimore volunteer tutor.

The need is real 

In Maryland, only 24% of economically disadvantaged students are reading proficiently by the fourth grade. The nationwide trends are similar—nearly nine million elementary school students from low-income homes are unable to use reading as a foundational skill to power their learning in all subjects in school. Without developing the reading skills needed to read on grade level, kids don’t have an equitable chance to succeed in school or in life. In fact, students who can’t read by fourth grade are four times more likely to not earn a high school diploma.

Reading Partners is a proven literacy program that partners with local public schools 

In the 2018-19 school year, Reading Partners continued to build on its history of successfully advancing early literacy in Baltimore. A national nonprofit organization, Reading Partners collaborates with community volunteers and local public schools to provide students in under-resourced schools with the proven, individualized reading intervention they need to read at grade level by fourth grade. Reading Partners collaborates with teachers and principals at local public elementary schools to identify students reading behind grade level and provide them with personalized literacy instruction in a dedicated “reading center” space at their school.

2018-19 results highlight deep community impact  

Each year, Reading Partners publishes student impact reports for the national organization and for each of its 13 respective regions across the country. The impact reports for the 2018-19 school year have recently been posted on and include the following highlights.

  • In Baltimore:

    • Nearly 600 students were matched with 716 community volunteers at 15 partner schools who delivered a total of over 21,000 tutoring sessions over the course of the year.
    • Among Reading Partners’ youngest students in Baltimore, 89% are developing mastery of key foundational reading skills needed to read at grade level.
    • Based on survey responses, 100% of principals report improved school-wide reading progress, 100% of teachers report Reading Partners is valuable to their school and 96% of volunteers were satisfied with their Reading Partners experience.
    • Learn more about Reading Partners’ impact in Baltimore here.
    • Learn about Reading Partners’ national impact here.

At Reading Partners, we strive for a day when all children in Baltimore city have the reading skills necessary to reach their full potential. Our students achieved great things last year and we are committed to continuing to partner with our schools, communities, and students to ensure that these results are lasting and life-changing.

said executive director, Jeffrey Zwillenberg.

The impressive student results highlighted in the 2018-19 impact reports are fueled by the generous participation of thousands of community volunteers. One hour truly can empower!

Tutoring in Baltimore starts as early as September 23. To become a volunteer with Reading Partners, please visit today.


About Reading Partners

For 20 years, Reading Partners has empowered students to succeed in reading and in life by engaging community volunteers to provide one-on-one tutoring. Since its founding, the national nonprofit organization has mobilized more than 60,000 community volunteers to provide proven, individualized literacy tutoring to nearly 60,000 elementary school students in over 400 under-resourced schools across ten states and the District of Columbia. Visit to learn more about our program impact, or connect with us on FacebookLinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram.

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