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Children learning with teacher

Why youth literacy?

While North Carolina has seen an increase in the number of adults with college degrees from 22.5% to 27.8%, Salisbury adults' percentage of 23.5% hasn't increased in 16 years. The need for additional support for youth and education is great, especially in the earlier years.

According to the National Research Council, "academic success, as defined by graduation, can be predicted with reasonable accuracy by knowing someone's reading skill at the end of third grade."

4th grade is when children make the transition from learning to read to reading to learn. Children who struggle with literacy at this stage tend to fall further behind their peers as time passes and are four times more likely than proficient readers to leave school without a diploma.

How it works:

Where we need you:

The 2022-2023 school year will be our seventh year working with school age students and our biggest undertaking yet! We have a strong partnership with Communities in Schools and work with them to provide training and support for all Youth Program volunteers. 

Volunteers go through initial training and background checks before being paired with students. The schools evaluate test scores to identify students who are at risk for falling behind. Volunteers work with students at at least once a week to build literacy skills. RCLC provides all materials and training. The schools are fully committed to this program and will provide tutoring space and support for volunteers in the program.

  • Hanford-Dole Elementary

  • Hurley Elementary

  • Isenberg Elementary

  • Knox Middle School

  • North Rowan Elementary School

  • North Rowan Middle School

  • North Rowan High School

  • Overton Elementary

  • Southeast Middle School

How to get started:

Tutors volunteering within the Rowan-Salisbury School (RSS) system needs to perform the following steps:

1. Submit an RCLC Youth Literacy Volunteer Application Form, by clicking here.

2. Fill out a background screening form. It takes less than 5 minutes!

3. Sign up for Communities in School training. Contact CIS to register for training at 704-797-0210 or

Happy Kids with Books

We know that this seems like a lot to get started, but our community's children thank you for your time!

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