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September 19, 2016

Reading Partners announces strong student reading progress in the Los Angeles Area from volunteer-led tutoring program

For Immediate Release

Laura Zachar, Executive Director, Reading Partners Los Angeles Area
(505) 264-8803,

Nonprofit calls for more community tutors in 2016-17 to expand impact

(Los Angeles, CA) September 19, 2016 — Reading Partners is a national nonprofit organization that collaborates with local public schools and mobilizes community volunteers to provide students in under-resourced schools with the proven, individualized reading support they need to read at grade level by fourth grade.

Reading Partners transforms a dedicated space into a reading center, complete with a library and teaching tools managed by a full-time AmeriCorps member or staff member. Reading Partners collaborates with teachers and principals to identify students reading behind grade level, and provides them with personalized literacy instruction.

2015-16 Results

Reading Partners prides itself on running a program that is both highly effective and transparent. In that spirit, the nonprofit organization issues annual impact reports spotlighting national-level performance as well as performance results in all 14 of its regions across the country. The impact reports for the 2015-16 school year have recently been posted and include the following highlights and many more.

  • In the Los Angeles Area:

    • Over 600 students at 10 partner schools were matched with nearly 800 community volunteers who delivered a total of more than 23,300 tutoring sessions over the course of the year.

    • Among Reading Partners’ youngest students in the Los Angeles Area, 93% mastered key foundational reading skills needed to read at grade level.

    • Based on survey responses, 100% of principals report improved school-wide reading progress, 97% of teachers report Reading Partners is valuable to their school and 96% of volunteers were satisfied with their experience.

    • Learn more about Reading Partners’ impact in the Los Angeles Area here.

    • Learn about Reading Partners’ national impact here.

“I couldn’t be happier with the performance of our students this year,” says Laura Zachar, executive director for the region, “We know that with outcomes like these, we are creating lifelong readers, and the skills we are developing will have enormous impact on their success in school and in life.”

More Volunteers Needed in the 2016-17 School Year

According to the National Assessment of Educational Progress, in 2015, only 21 percent of low-income students nationwide, and 36 percent of students overall, are reading proficiently by the fourth grade. This means that nearly nine million low-income elementary school students are still learning to read when they should instead be reading to learn. Without developing the reading skills needed to read on grade level, kids won’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 drop out of school or not earn a high school diploma.

In the 2016-17 school year, Reading Partners aims to match 910 community volunteers with 680 struggling readers in the Los Angeles Area. 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.

“I love it,” says Gayle, a tutor at Jackson Elementary School in Pasadena.  “Sometimes I feel I am getting more out of this than the students. The Reading Partners program is a wonderful way to make a connection with kids.  The one-on-one tutoring twice a week works, and I love watching these kids emerge as readers.”

The impressive student results highlighted above and in the corresponding impact reports would not be possible without the generous participation of thousands of community volunteers. To become a volunteer with Reading Partners, please visit today.

About Reading Partners

Reading Partners empowers students to succeed in reading and in life by engaging community volunteers to provide one-on-one tutoring. The national nonprofit organization will provide proven, individualized literacy tutoring to more than 11,000 elementary school students in under-resourced schools across ten states and the District of Columbia in the 2016-17 school year. Visit, or connect with us on LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook, to learn more.

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