RSS hosting long list of volunteer orientations this semester

Published 12:05 am Wednesday, August 17, 2022

SALISBURY — For folks interested in contributing to local schools, plenty of opportunities are available to learn about volunteerism this fall.

Rowan-Salisbury Schools is hosting volunteer orientations throughout the county until early October.

RSS Community Relationships Specialist Amanda Howard said the extra locations help bring in people who would not normally travel to the district’s central office. The sessions are open to the public and last between 30 minutes to an hour depending on how many questions a group has.

The sessions will include a review of guidelines, processes and procedures important for anyone who wants to volunteer. Every volunteer has to pass a background check and there are two tiers of volunteers: those who are not allowed to be alone with students and those who have gone through training to monitor and tutor students without supervision.

Howard said the sessions are open to the public and no signup is required.

Volunteer needs vary from school to school and volunteers are onboarded at the school they plan to serve.

Schools need field trip chaperones, test proctors, people to work concession stands at sporting events, help with book fairs and people to read with students.

The district is rebuilding its roster of volunteers. In the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic there were no volunteers allowed in schools and orientations ground to a halt.

West Rowan Elementary Principal Kris Wolfe said her school needs parents to chaperone field trips and volunteers for classrooms and the school’s book room. She said the volunteers are a huge part of the school.

“Volunteers that work in the book room, that’s huge because that’s all of our guided reading books,” Wolfe said. “They help reshelve books in that resource room, do things as simple as cutting out laminates and it’s an extra set of hands to help the teachers with instructional resources.”

Wolfe said the school is always looking for more volunteers and as of April last year the school had 127 volunteers. She said the school was excited to bring volunteers back last year and build the program up. The school is planning to host a volunteer training session with a translator so the school can reach all of its families.

These are the remaining workshops:

• Aug. 30: 10 a.m. at Wallace Educational Forum

• Sept. 2: 9 a.m. at Rockwell Elementary School

• Sept. 13: 10 a.m. at West Rowan Elementary School

• Sept. 15: 6 p.m. at Wallace Educational Forum

• Sept. 23: 1:30 p.m. at West Rowan Elementary

• Oct. 4 : 10 a.m. at Granite Quarry Elementary School

• Oct. 6: 1:30 p.m. at West Rowan Elementary

About Carl Blankenship

Carl Blankenship has covered education for the Post since December 2019. Before coming to Salisbury he was a staff writer for The Avery Journal-Times in Newland and graduated from Appalachian State University in 2017, where he was editor of The Appalachian.

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