SOAR: Student Opportunities for After-School Resources
1605 W. Kirby Ave.
Champaign, IL (IPA)
María Lang, Program Coordinator
SOAR: Student Opportunities for After-School Resources is a partnership between the University of Illinois and the International Prep Academy (IPA) in Champaign. The program provides after-school enrichment for Latina/o bilingual youth. Children in grades 2-5 benefit from tutoring in reading and homework followed by social activities. The program is part of a growing national trend for dual language instruction in schools. Instruction in two languages has value for both emergent bilinguals and those fluent in English. The goal of dual language instruction is to promote positive cross-cultural understanding, bilingualism and biliteracy at a time when knowledge of language and culture confers power.
SOAR is one of several programs available through the Center for Education in Small Urban Communities. The Center is an outreach arm in the College of Education.
Opportunities for U of I students include:
SOAR tutoring is scheduled for TWR from 2:00-3:15, with time for reading, homework assistance, and social activities with the children. Illinois students are paired with the same child for the semester and may choose to volunteer more than one day per week. Spanish-speaking skills are not necessary in order to participate. Tutors will need to complete a background check through the Champaign School District the third week of classes. The SOAR program coordinator will provide the clearance form for the tutors. This opportunity is especially interesting to Illinois students who want to gain cross-cultural awareness and relationship skills.
U of I students who would like to tutor with SOAR need to commit by