STAIR is a reading and mentoring program designed to provide early intervention for at-risk second grade students and has partnered with Annapolis City Schools for the last ten years. Throughout the year, students, identified by their reading teachers, work with an adult tutor twice a week after school for approximately one hour on a variety of activities, all focused on increasing basic reading skills and utilizing an educator approved STAIR curriculum. The volunteer tutor and student read together, play word games, practice phonics, and write stories. A bond is forged between tutor and student, and learning occurs in a safe, nurturing environment.
In May, 2015 STAIR proudly graduated 60 students. Their students read over 1,500 books with help from 160 tutors and 9 coordinators across six STAIR sites. This year, students received the Children’s World Atlas by DK Publishing as a graduation gift. Through the year they received countless books to take home because a home library is really important!
The STAIR – Annapolis program is an outgrowth of the original STAIR program begun in New Orleans in 1985 and still continuing to effectively serve at-risk students after 29 years. This will be their 10th year of STAIR in the City of Annapolis. The first Annapolis STAIR program, under the auspices of the First Presbyterian Church of Annapolis, began at the Stanton Center on Clay Street, for students attending Annapolis Elementary School. In 2014, STAIR became a 501(c)(3) to professionalize and better fund the organization. There are six sites around the City of Annapolis–Germantown, Georgetown East, and Tyler Heights Elementary Schools and Robinwood, Eastport, and Stanton Community Centers. A new site at Mills-Parole Elementary School opened in the fall of 2015! A Site Coordinator supports each site and is there to assist tutors and to make sure that the space is ready for STAIR. Volunteer tutors are placed where the need is greatest. A volunteer can chose to tutor one or two days a week. All tutors work with the same student for the entire school year. STAIR’s fall semester begins the last week in September and ends mid-December. Spring semester begins the first week in February and ends in mid-May. There is always a need for one/two day a week and substitute tutors!
STAIR begins for tutors with a required 2-hour tutor training session held on the campus of the First Presbyterian Church at 171 Duke of Gloucester Street in Annapolis. New tutors must watch the Anne Arundel County School (AACPS) Sexual Harassment and Abuse power point video and submit an AACPS background check form.
Please consider applying to become a STAIR volunteer. Children learn to read through second grade. Once they reach third grade, they read to learn. If students have poor reading skills their progress through school becomes a downward slippery slope often culminating in and contributing to the high school dropout rate. STAIR wants more positive results for Annapolis City 2nd graders!
Contact Linda Barbour, Executive Director at 410.279.6480 or [email protected] or Doug Smith, Chairman of the Board of Directors at 410.279.8603 or [email protected]. Please like STAIR on Facebook or visit our website at http://stairannapolis.org.