FFHFYF Treasurer, Andrew Haller, recently presented a grant award to volunteers and participants from the Antioch Lutheran Church Free Reading Tutors program. The program was started in January 2017 by retired teacher Shirley George who identified a need to provide assistance to children in the community who require additional help with reading skills. Shirley was inspired by the third-grade reading bill which could potentially lead to the retention in third grade of children identified as being below-grade readers.
The program is open to children in grades 2-4 from Farmington and Farmington Hills, runs six days a week (after school Monday through Friday and Saturday mornings) and is staffed by trained volunteers from both Antioch Lutheran Church and the local community. There are currently 23 children enrolled in the program and they receive one hour a week one-on one tuition free of charge. Initially the program was solely to assist with reading skills, but there are now a couple of volunteers able to help with math tuition as well. The program collaborates with Farmington Public Schools wherever possible to set individual targets and goals for each child.
Some books have already been donated to the program and the grant from FFHFYF will help with the purchase of more reading material that aligns with that currently used in Farmington Public Schools. The grant will also assist with publicity materials for the program.