|Albemarle County Public Schools
401 McIntire Road
Charlottesville, VA 22902
170 Rugby Road
Charlottesville, VA 22903
JOINT NEWS RELEASE
(ALBEMARLE COUNTY, Virginia)—Albemarle County Public Schools (ACPS) and Madison House, the volunteer center for students who attend the University of Virginia (UVA), have partnered to pilot a new tutoring program throughout the county.
“Last May, President Jim Ryan called for students of the University of Virginia to volunteer as tutors and mentors in local school classrooms to help recover the learning loss caused by the COVID-19 pandemic,” Stephanie Carter, Executive Director of Madison House, said. “We are so proud that our students have come out in force to answer that call. We expect that this partnership will not only be an opportunity for them to experience being a mentor and a teacher to younger students, but will also be an opportunity to learn something about themselves as well.”
The initiative aims to overcome the transportation obstacle many UVA students face when volunteering over a large geographical area like Albemarle County. Two ACPS buses pick up UVA students each day from the Madison House location on Rugby Road, transport them to the schools at which they volunteer, and bring them back in the afternoon. One bus travels a route through the southern portion of Albemarle County while the other transports tutors around the urban ring.
“Transportation should never be a barrier to education,” Bill Morse, ACPS Transportation Services Manager, said. “Our transportation department is delighted to be able to join in with this program and help provide our students with opportunities to excel.”
Connecting students with tutors not only helps students academically, but it gives them an opportunity to form a relationship with someone who can become a mentor for them, according to Dr. Matthew Haas, ACPS Superintendent of Schools.
“The University of Virginia is such a great resource for ACPS, and we want to make sure we are able to make the most of anyone who is willing to step in and help our students succeed,” Haas said. “This program allows ACPS students to receive a little extra help with their classwork, and it also provides them with an opportunity to connect with a leader and mentor in their community they may not have had the chance to connect with otherwise.”
Of the more than 250 Madison House volunteers currently working with schools throughout Charlottesville City and Albemarle County, about 125 are using the volunteer bus, and the program hopes to recruit more volunteers in the coming weeks. Tutors can assist students with a variety of subjects in several elementary, middle and high schools throughout the county.
The Madison House volunteer program helps ACPS fill tutoring spots at high-priority schools in the division. UVA students who are available on weekdays from 9:15 a.m. to noon and are interested in tutoring ACPS students can visit the Madison House website to learn more.
“We’re anticipating the need for tutors to increase over the next several months,” Dr. Eric Irizarry, Director of Equity, Family, School and Community Relations, said. “So, we’re ecstatic to be able to partner with Madison House to get ahead of that curve.”
Dr. Haas and other ACPS division leadership are expected to attend an official bus send-off celebration at 9 a.m. on Friday, February 9, from the Madison House location at 170 Rugby Road in Charlottesville.
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