Who can participate in Youth Programs?
All students, faculty and staff are encouraged to participate as a mentor. Some student participants are volunteers; some are service-learners, and others are part of the Federal College Work-Study program - earning their funds as they mentor. Students from Tallahassee Community College and Florida A & M University are also welcome to participate (a valid student ID must be provided before participating in the program).
What are mentor requirements?
All mentors must dedicate at least one hour per week for a minimum of one entire semester. Prior to mentoring, you are required to attend a three-hour training which explains the prescribed curriculum, teaches mentoring tips and outlines program policies and procedures.
Do I need to have a background check in order to participate?
Yes. Fingerprinting paperwork will be given out at each training so that you can have the FBI Criminal Background Check conducted. You will complete the paperwork for a sexual predator check while at the training session. You must take the fingerprint forms to the Leon County Schools background check office at 2757 W. Pensacola Street. It will take a minimum of 1 week to process your fingerprints. Leon County Schools pays the cost of this background check for each mentor. After you pass the background check, a mentor photo ID badge will be issued. Once you receive this badge, you will begin mentoring.
*If you are serving as part of a course offered through the FSU College of Education, you will be required to pay for your own background check. You can pick up the necessary forms prior to your mentor training session at the OASIS office.
When and where are the mentor trainings?
During the school year a choice of 5 training dates are available in September (for fall mentoring), January (for spring mentoring), and May (for summer mentoring). Please refer to the welcome page for our current mentor training dates, times and locations.
What do I need to bring with me to the mentor trainings?
If you have worked in the Leon County School system and you have gone through a background check, you will need to bring your mentor ID badge so that it can be photocopied and kept with our records. You should also bring a copy of your class and/or work schedule so that you can choose a mentoring site/day and time that works best for your schedule.
Will there be a curriculum I have to learn?
If you choose to mentor with first graders at Bond Elementary you will have to learn how to use an Early Interventions in Reading program produced by McGraw-Hill. You will be trained on how to use the curriculum properly during orientation week. For all of the remaining sites you will be given strategies and techniques on how to effectively use Next Generation Sunshine State Standards to help your student(s) with homework and in the classroom. For those that are in need we will also supply supplemental materials, such as quick guides for Algebra I, Algebra II, and Geometry, for your use during your mentoring sessions.
Is transportation provided?
Transportation is provided to some sites. Please see the Mentoring Sites & Times link on the homepage to see which sites offer transportation and which ones do not. Anyone needing transportation will need to meet in the lobby of the Center in the Dunlap Success Center at least 15 minutes before the scheduled mentoring time. This area will serve as the pick up and drop off point.
What are the benefits to participation?
ServScript, TallyScript and RattlerRecord credit is awarded for participation. Mentors also gain knowledge, experience with children and tutoring, and make a difference in a child's academic and emotional/social life.
Can I mentor at more than one school?
Yes, you can mentor at more than one school. But, you must be sure that you can commit at those sites for the entire semester. If you are unsure that you can make that commitment do not sign up for more than one.
If I am doing this for a class do I have to continue mentoring after I meet the required number of hours for my professor?
Yes. If you are mentoring as part of a course, as a volunteer, or as a work-study student once you begin mentoring you are required to stay for the entire semester. Leaving early can cause a child to feel as if he/she has done something wrong or that that he/she is being abandoned and we don't ever want to make a child feel this way.