Around Acadiana

Aug 16, 2013 5:00 PM by MELISSA CANONE

Volunteers needed to offer reading practice to students

LAFAYETTE, LA - United Way of Acadiana is recruiting volunteers to provide extra reading practice to local elementary school students.

In conjunction with classroom teachers, United Way Readers are paired with first- or second-grade students to provide reading practice for one hour per week for a 10-week period, which supports efforts to ensure children read at grade level by the fourth grade. Training opportunities are provided for the volunteers.

"United Way of Acadiana's goal is to ensure children in our service area graduate high school on time." said Keler Williams, director of volunteer mobilization. "Students who miss an opportunity to read at grade level are four times more likely to not graduate on time. United Way Readers make an impact in efforts to ensure students are on the path toward academic success."

There are currently more than 340 United Way Readers working with more than 450 students in Acadia, Lafayette and St. Martin parishes. Nearly 80 percent of students tested in the past improved their overall reading scores as a result of receiving extra reading practice.

Trainings to become a United Way Reader will be held at the following times and locations:

· Acadia Parish: Aug. 21, 2-3 p.m. at the Acadia Parish School Board office's media meeting room, 2402 N. Parkerson Ave, Crowley.

· Lafayette Parish: Aug. 21, 10-11 a.m. at the United Way of Acadiana office, 215 E. Pinhook Road.

· St. Martin Parish: Sept. 4, 9-10:30 a.m. at The Early Learning Center, 1004 S. Martin Luther King Drive, St. Martinville.

Additional training dates will be offered.

For more information about United Way Readers or to register for a training, go to and click EDUCATION or contact Jennifer Shelton, volunteer mobilization coordinator, at 337-706-1217 or



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