Who may become a ViPS?
Anyone who enjoys working with people and has a genuine interest in the education of children may become a ViPS. Formal or specialized education is not always necessary.
What do volunteers do?
Volunteer services are varied and broad. The kind of service depends upon the needs of the individual school or teacher as well as the interests and abilities of the volunteer. General areas for volunteer assistance include: tutoring students; general classroom assistance; library, office, health room or playground assistance; making instructional games; assisting with art, music, science, home economics, special projects, special education for the gifted or those with learning disabilities; tutoring English as a Second Language; helping with special activities; mentoring; chaperoning field trips; and enriching the curriculum as a resource volunteer by speaking to classes.
Volunteers should always work under the direct supervision of a district employee. Volunteers should never be placed in charge of a classroom. Volunteers should not be placed in any assignment that requires Federal Bureau of Investigation and/or national background checks on the individual. Volunteers vetted through ViPS do not meet the Arkansas Department of Education rules governing background checks for those individuals serving as substitute teachers.
When do volunteers serve?
Most ViPS serve during school hours but there are volunteer opportunities at other times, such as after-school tutoring, assisting with sports events, chaperoning activities, etc. Click to print Volunteer Application! Completion of the background check is required prior to placement.
How much time must a volunteer give?
There is no minimum requirement. VIPS serve as little or as much time as they wish. However, volunteers are encouraged to set up a schedule for fulfilling their volunteer commitments and to stick with it.
Where do volunteers serve?
Volunteers can serve in any Little Rock School District facility where teachers or staff request help.
What exactly is a resource volunteer?
A resource ViPS is anyone with special interests, talents, skills, hobbies or life experiences who shares this information with students. Resource volunteers visit classrooms at times and locations which are convenient for them. Resource volunteers may serve one or several times during the year, depending upon requests for their services and the volunteer's availability.
What is mentoring?
Mentors develop a supportive one-to-one relationship with a student to facilitate the student's educational, social and personal growth. Each volunteer mentor spends one hour per week visiting in school with an assigned student and acts as a special friend, role model and advisor to the student.
What is the Partners in Education program?
Business and community organizations in the greater Little Rock area are matched with an elementary or secondary school in a mutually beneficial partnership developed to meet individual needs and talents at the school and organization. Some businesses grant release-time to employee volunteers to act as tutors or mentors, develop enrichment programs or provide incentives for student achievements. Schools, in turn, recognize their partners with decorative arts, musical presentations or other mutually agreed upon activities. Partners in Education is an opportunity for businesses, community organizations and schools to support one another.
What training is necessary?
On-the-job orientation and training will be provided by a member of the VIPS staff and/or the teacher or staff member with whom the volunteer works. Additionally, support sessions for specialized volunteer groups, such as mentors or Partners in Education.