What it Means for Your Child to be in SMART

SMART is a reading program that engages community volunteers to read one-on-one with students each week in schools across the state. If your child is selected to participate in SMART, they will attend up to two 30-minute reading sessions each week. We strive to maintain consistent reading pairs so that your child can benefit from building a positive relationship with two volunteers throughout the school year.

How Children are Selected

Research tells us that all children need one-on-one reading time with adults, and that all children can benefit from the SMART program in some way. Teachers select children they feel will most benefit from the SMART program for a variety of reasons:

  • Children who would benefit from one-on-one reading time
  • Children who would benefit from opportunities to increase enjoyment of reading
  • Children who would benefit from selecting their own books to take and keep
  • Children who are not being served in other programs

How SMART Screens Volunteers

SMART’s number one priority is to maintain a safe and positive experience for all participating SMART students and volunteers. All volunteers undergo an extensive national criminal history screening before being accepted into the program. We also have trained Site Coordinators who oversee each reading session and ensure that a child is never alone with an adult.

Importance of Books

Having a wide variety of children’s books outside the classroom is critical to a child’s reading success. If your child is participating in SMART, they will have an opportunity to select two books per month to keep. We highly encourage you as a parent to read with your child every day and hope that the SMART books are providing more opportunities to engage in literacy activities for your family. To learn more about SMART’s book selection, click here.

Suggestions for Reading

Please check out our Why Reading Matters resource page for lots of great reading tips, book suggestions and other literacy information for parents and families.