The Workforce Investment Act of 1998 defines literacy as “an individual’s ability to read, write, and speak in English, compute and solve problems at levels of proficiency necessary to function on the job, in the family of the individual, and in society.” As information and technology have increasingly shaped our society, the skills needed to function successfully have gone beyond reading. Literacy has come to include problem-solving and computation skills.
Although Project Read is located in the Provo City Library, it functions independently from the Provo City Library program.
The Project Read Office is located in room 215 of the Provo City Library at Academy Square. Enter the library from the front doors facing University Avenue (West side of the library) and then turn left. Our office is the third door on the left.
The Project Read Office is open from 10:00 am to 8:00 pm Monday through Thursday, 10:00 am to 4:00 pm Friday, and 10:00 to 2:00 pm Saturday. Other hours are available by appointment. Unfortunately, there are only two employees who work the front desk and there are times when neither one can be in the office (even during the above-stated office hours). At those times, a note will be left on the door to advise patrons of when the office will reopen.
Project Read charges a $10 annual commitment fee and $20 refundable book deposit fee to students. Textbooks can be checked out through the Project Read Office or purchased for a nominal fee.
Project Read does not teach English classes; however, over half of Project Read’s students are not native English speakers. Because Project Read requires a basic English speaking competency before a student can enter the program, those students who do not meet this requirement are referred to an ESL program and invited to come back and retest in six months. After acquiring a basic English speaking competency, students can enroll in Project Read.
Project Read is an adult literacy program. Project Read serves anyone age 16 and up who reads below the seventh grade level. Children are referred to a local family literacy program.
The Project Read Technology Center is for Project Read tutors and students. The center provides reading and writing software to help Project Read students progress in literacy skills while learning basic computer skills at the same time.
Project Read tutors and students fill out a basic application form including contact information and a schedule of availability. Tutors and students are matched based on what times they are available.
Project Read provides individual (one-on-one) literacy tutoring services, so the “classes” are held whenever the library is open (Monday-Friday 9 am to 9 pm, and Saturday 9 am to 6 pm), and whenever students are available for tutoring. In addition, Project Read offers seven Literacy Labs for students throughout the week (Tuesday-Thursday 12 pm to 2 pm and 6 pm to 8 pm).
Students and tutors are welcome to meet in public places (upon approval from Project Read staff). Students and tutors are currently meeting in the Provo, Orem, and American Fork libraries, BYU, Deseret Industries, and other public places.
Project Read has thousands of books in its library, which can be checked out by Project Read tutors and students. Project Read also has a computer resource center to be used by Project Read tutors and students.
First and foremost, tutors need to have the desire to spend time with and help someone. Tutors must be able to write and speak English competently and are required to attend a Project Read tutor training session after their first meeting with their student. In addition, tutors must commit to serving four to six months, and be able to meet three hours per week with a student, plus any preparation and travel time.
No. Tutors must speak, read, and write in English if they are tutoring at Project Read.
Project Read offers a four-hour tutor training class every other month. Tutors are required to attend the first training session after they start tutoring. Tutors are encouraged to start meeting with a student before the training class because they are able to come to training with more specific questions about their individual situation. Project Read is a one-on-one program and every situation is different, so tutors get the most out of the general training by coming with specific questions.
Project Read also provides bi-monthly skill-enhancement workshops focusing on different areas of training.
Project Read has a waiting list of students who want tutors. Tutors usually meet with their student within one to two weeks of filling out an information sheet. This depends on what time the tutor is available and what students are available at the same time.
Although tutoring is an individual project, small groups can provide service by leveling books, making games and flashcards for students and tutors to use, etc. These projects can also be done by someone who cannot commit to three hours of tutoring per week.