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Math and Reading Corps seeking tutors before fall

The pandemic has caused a lot of stress for teachers, parents and students. The Math and Reading Corps are looking to quickly mobilize before fall.

MINNEAPOLIS — The Minnesota Department of Education and Governor Tim Walz have not announced yet what school will look like this fall due to COVID-19.

If it's going to be anything like the spring, schools are going to need some help.

That's where Reading Corps and Math Corps step in. They're part of a team of AmeriCorps volunteers, under Serve Minnesota, looking to make things smoother for fall, no matter the plan for schools.

"We share the anxiety and we share the uncertainty, and the stress that comes with that," Reading and Math Corps Director of Talent Acquisition Andrew Mueller said. 

Mueller explained that the tutors with the two groups have always filled a crucial supporting role to schools in need throughout Minnesota, even before the pandemic.

"Our schools are telling us that they need support this fall," Mueller said. "So we're really doubling down on our efforts to mobilize communities to serve their community. This year we're looking for over 1,000 Reading and Math Corps tutors to support schools in the metro and throughout the state."

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This as teachers prepare to take on an even bigger role, not only as educators but also as support systems, holding up school families.

"Teachers are going to be feeling a lot of pressure to provide not just academic support, but social-emotional support, emotional support," Mueller said. "Our teachers are engaging in a lot of creative problem solving. It's requiring a lot of our schools to support needs of students and learners. If we can provide a tutor or tutors for our buildings, that gives our teaching teams, school teams, staff, an extra person to help support the ultimate goal which is to help our kids."

And because the plans for fall are in flux, so are they.

"We have our ear to the ground, following the guidance of Department of Education, really listening to our schools and in terms of what they're planning and our contingency plans are mirroring that," Mueller said. He said they are prepared for in-person tutoring, online tutoring and other options as well.

He said there's no need for those who are interested in working with the Math Corps or the Reading Corps to worry about their qualifications.

"If the desire is there, we have training staff and coaches to support," he said. "So we actually did a study of our program and it found that regardless of background, our tutors are able to have an impact."

Math and Reading Corps are both looking for 1,000 tutors before the beginning of August. If this sounds like your calling, you can find more information at readingandmath.net.

Roughly 500 tutors will be in the Metro area, and the other 500 will cover the rest of the state.

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