MOVES School Information

Overview of MOVES Program

MOVES is designed to effectively and efficiently put well-trained volunteers into schools that lack sufficient resources to provide remedial support (i.e., interventions) for all struggling learners. In our work with numerous schools and districts, we find that just about every school can benefit from free, highly-skilled support.

That's correct: the MOVES Program is completely free for participating schools.

To provide schools with this much-needed support, MOVES staff recruit and train community volunteers to use academic intervention programs (for reading, writing, and math) that have shown through research to improve students' learning. A MOVES coordinator works with the school and the volunteers to ensure that volunteers are assisting in a way that efficiently aligns with the school's schedule and the teachers' needs. MOVES volunteers may be trained in intervention programs already being implemented by educators within the school, or they may be trained in an intervention program that is new to the school. When a school is not sure how to best support struggling learners in a particular academic skill (e.g., reading comprehension), our MOVES coordinator helps schools to select the most effective intervention possible and then trains our volunteers to use the program. In some cases, the MOVES coordinator can also assist with training school staff.

The bottom line is that our highly-trained volunteers greatly contribute by using intervention programs with the students who otherwise are not receiving the support because of time-limited school personnel.

Exactly how Does the MOVES Program work?

  1. Each school or community center involved with our MOVES Program will provide the MOVES Coordinator with a liaison to facilitate communication and help coordinate each volunteer's time with the students in need. After the initial planning meeting, the time required from the within-school liaison is pretty minimal (an average of just 1-3 hours per month).
  2. To successfully learn the kinds of intervention programs we provide for our students and schools, the MOVES coordinator provides and coordinates workshops for the volunteers, resulting in approximately 4-8 hours of training (depending on the intervention program). Volunteers generally commit at least 3 hours per week, typically 1-2 days of volunteering in a school, and average about 150 hours of service over the course of a school year.
  3. Volunteers are observed using the program (in the school with an actual student) at least two times during our "periodic check-ins" by the MOVES Coordinator. This periodic check-in represents one key method of (a) ensuring that the volunteer has the support he or she needs, (b) is using the intervention program correctly and most effectively, and (c) is sharing an empowering and rewarding experience with the student.
  4. Throughout recruitment, communication, and coordination, the MOVES Coordinator knows that volunteers are vital to the program and the ticket to assisting schools in a meaningful way. Therefore, the MOVES Coordinator works throughout the school year to sustain a quality relationship between the volunteer, the school, and the MOVES Program.

How the MOVES Program is Unique from Other Volunteer Programs

We know from sound research, and from our experience with MOVES, exactly what is needed in a successful school volunteer program. A successful volunteer program can be defined as one that improves student learning while also being feasible and enjoyable to both volunteers and schools. In short, not all volunteer programs are the same, and many do not offer the following key ingredients that research has shown to be necessary for a successful volunteer program.

These key ingredients, all of which are integrated into the MOVES program, are:

  1. The intervention programs used by the volunteers are structured and have research evidence of being effective.
  2. There is a designated volunteer coordinator (i.e., MOVES Program coordinator) knowledgeable about academic instruction.
  3. The volunteer tutors are well-trained and systemically verified to be well-trained.
  4. There is coordination between the tutoring activities and the students classroom instruction.

As stated above, the MOVES Program integrates all of these elements in order to maximize success for the students and the volunteers, as well as to meaningfully support teachers and schools.

Contact the MOVES Coordinator

  • Does your school need additional resources for supporting struggling learners?
  • Would your school like more assistance delivering academic interventions?
  • Do you want to know more about MOVES?

If you answered 'yes' to any of the questions above, please contact the MOVES Program Coordinator, Lauren Joyce, at: