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Volunteer Tutors' FAQ

Is there a cost for tutoring or materials?

All Gorge Literacy services and materials are free to our learners. Learners may keep and write in most workbook style books. Other books need to be kept in good condition and returned to us when you finish with them or stop your tutoring.

Tutors are also provided with teacher guides and copies of workbooks if necessary. These must be returned at the end of each tutor match.

What is the process once a tutor/learner match is identified?

When we have identified a tutor that fits with a particular learner’s needs and schedule, our staff will meet with that tutor to review the learner’s goals and initial work plan to make sure the tutor is comfortable with the match before moving forward.

Once this is confirmed, a match meeting will be scheduled with the tutor, the learner and a program staff member. Here, we will help with the beginning steps of setting up your tutoring sessions (time, place, etc), review important information, introduce learning materials and activities, and help you get to know each other before your first official tutoring session.

Where do tutoring sessions take place?

Tutoring sessions generally take place in any public setting within the community that is convenient and comfortable for the pair. This could include your community library, a room in a church or social service agency, a coffee shop or restaurant.

The best and the most common location for meetings is on one of the CGCC campuses in a common area or reserved classroom/meeting room. We can help you with finding appropriate meeting locations if necessary. We discourage pairs meeting in private homes for a variety of reasons.

How do I become a volunteer literacy tutor?

Complete our volunteer literacy tutor application form then attend a one day new tutor training session. If we do not have one scheduled, we can do a simplified one-on-one training to get you started with a learner, and then you may attend the next scheduled formal training. Learn more: literacy tutor qualifications and training.

Who will I be working with and what will I be teaching?

We have a diversity of learners with different needs and abilities. Generally, we serve any adult within the Columbia Gorge Community College (CGCC) service area in the areas of basic reading, writing, math and English conversation skills (ESOL). We also have learners with specific goals such as working towards a GED, citizenship status, computer, and employment/life skills needs. When possible, we will take your preferences into account as to what type of learner you might like to work with.

What is the time commitment?

Dates, times, length and frequency of sessions are usually decided by each learner/tutor pair based on their needs and desires. To make sufficient progress, we recommend that tutor pairs meet for three hours per week (usually two 1½ hour sessions).