Have you ever wanted to do something AMAZING to change the world but didn't know where to start?
Here is an opportunity to help underprivileged children, to help under-served children, to help ALL children displaced from school by COVID-19, to help close the opportunity gap in America, by closing the education gap, by closing the literacy gap that looms large, like an impassable crevasse, separating the haves from the have-nots, the rich, the almost rich, the upper-middle class, even the middle class, from the more than 100 million lower class, lower middle class, working-class poor, impoverished and underprivileged Americans.
We are looking for 1 WordPress Expert/Specialist with 2+ years of experience in Web Design/Development using WordPress, either in the corporate or non-profit arena, who have the skills, expertise, experience, passion, and time to be part of something amazing that is about to fundamentally change the lives of millions of children.
The messaging, branding, look and feel content, graphics, and animation, will come from deep collaboration with the other team members and will require experience, strategic and creative thinking, excellent planning and communications skills, and strong graphics and coding skills.
Working knowledge and experience of WordPress is a must for this role.
Link to our app on Google Play Store: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.funetix.live
Right now, millions of children have no hope; but soon, they will have the opportunity to learn how to read, which, in turn, will open a window to education and to a world of potential for them that, not only, has never been opened before, but that has never even been seriously contemplated as a viable, potential reality.
What we are talking about is an adaptive learning, gamified smartphone app, called FUNetix (www.FUNetix.org), that can teach children how to read, in their own home, in an average of just 12 hours of total instruction time!
We are the American Youth Literacy Foundation, and we have been teaching children how to read for 12 years using a patented "reading decoding system!" We have been developing this app for about two years (but started concepting and working on prototypes almost five years ago); and this year we will launch this incredible smartphone app in the App Store and on Google Play at or around Thanksgiving, 2020, to help save millions of children from a lifetime of illiteracy!
Already, there are millions of children who are struggling to learn how to read. Already, there are millions more who have given up on reading and are destined to go through life either completely illiterate or with only semi-literate skills at best. And now with the displacement of 55 million children from school, for an indeterminate amount of time, the loss of reading capacity of the next generation, and the "seemingly incessant," "widening of the gap," presents a new "crisis moment" in American education and a very real threat to the future success (in school, and in life) of millions of young children.
But we believe there IS a way to bridge that gap, to make this a "watershed moment" instead of a crisis moment, by stopping that gap from widening. Universal access to literacy through FUNetix will close the opportunity gap by closing the education gap by closing the literacy gap to near zero. What happens after that, can only be imagined: a virtuous cycle of communication and learning, perhaps, between teachers and students, in ALL of America’s schools and classrooms. And what happens after that? An entire generation of nearly 100% literate young people of all races, religions, creeds, cultures, and socioeconomic backgrounds will, quite inevitably, reform the social fabric of the American landscape for the good, and for the benefit of innumerable generations to come.
According to the U.S. Government’s "Annual Report Card," more than 20 million children in grades 3-12, in America's public schools today, can't read at anything close to a proficient level! Translated into "English," that means they are either completely illiterate ("Below Basic:" 24%), or functionally illiterate/ semi-literate ("Basic:" 43%). Fully more than half of all America’s public-school-educated children have between zero and minimal literacy skills. This travesty exists in spite of the fact that, as a nation, we spend more than $11,000 per year, per student, to deliver a public school "education." Just over 24% of all students drop out of public school, most of them in 9th grade. That's 1 million per year!
Since the year 2000, we have "graduated" more than 20 million illiterate "students" into the U.S. economy, into our socio-economic and socio-political marketplace of ideas without hope and without basic survival skills. Without literacy, and without education, these young people have no chance at fulfilling their personal potential; and economic security is simply unattainable. That’s all about to change!
We are partnered with an engineering team that was one of the five, $1 million finalists in the XPrize for Global Learning competition (the winners of which were announced in May 2019) named Pubbly (www.Pubbly.com). The XPrize for Global Learning was a $15 million worldwide competition created to allow app "design and development" teams from around the world to build and deliver a tablet-based app to children in remote villages in Africa, that could teach them how to read and do basic math (children of all ages, most of whom had never been to school before in their lives).
The XPrize was founded by Peter Diamandis and is credited with launching the commercial space industry, including SpaceX, with the original XPrize of $10 million, created to incent teams from around the world to build a rocket that could reach low earth orbit without help from NASA or any governmental space agency or nation-state; and SpaceX's founder, Elon Musk is a key benefactor and contributor to XPrize, and a close personal friend of Peter Diamandis, who, in addition to being the founder of XPrize, is also the founder of Singularity University, among other entities.
The American Youth Literacy Foundation, dba FUNetix, is a 12-year-old, nationwide, charitable 501 (c) (3) non-profit. We started out as a tutoring program in the regional Philadelphia, Central New Jersey area and we still provide some one-on-one tutoring. But our focus has always been on finding a scalable solution to the literacy crisis in America.
With the rise of the smartphone and the amazing penetration of this incredibly powerful, and ubiquitously critical tool (currently estimated at 80%), even into the most impoverished communities in America, we realized several years ago, that the answer to scalability we had been searching for, was going to be in the form of an app. So for the past several years, we have been working to convert our amazing reading curriculum, which teaches children how to read in an average of just 12 hours, into an app that teaches children how to read in about the same time. And this is where you come in.
The curriculum that our app is based on is a patented reading decoding system and is so effective at teaching children how to read, that it usually only takes 4-6 hours for them to understand the basic reading-learning system, (which includes a FUN, but intensive introduction to all 44 sounds of the English language, and the basic concept of blending sound symbols into words), and another 4-6 hours for them to reach a 2nd-grade reading level!
Compare this to so many of our students who, as discussed above, have been in the public school system for 6, 7, 8, 9 years or more, and are still unable to spell simple words like "this, that, these, those and the." Compare this to millions of students who have dropped out of school, primarily because they can't read (more than 10 million per decade).
Our organization is an "all-volunteer," mission-centric, extended virtual network, comprised of more than fifty, highly skilled and experienced individuals from around the country (and a few from around the world) who collaborate through cloud-based technology and platforms. The app consists of more than 2,000 screens, each individually narrated to most closely simulate a true one-on-one tutoring experience, which has been our hallmark for 12 years.
On, or about, Thanksgiving, 2020, we will deliver this incredible reading app to the App Store and Google Play, and with it, an end-user experience to millions of children in America's inner cities and rural counties, in the barrios and the suburbs, and on the American Indian reservations, and everywhere in-between, where illiteracy is endemic and education and opportunity are, tragically, not universally attainable.
FUNetix is real and tangible, and life-changing; and unlike so many other discussions, conversations, policies, programs, and protocols, AND, unlike so many other legacies (and even brand new) reading apps, reading programs, and reading curricula based on legacy phonics pedagogy, (which doesn't scale, isn't amenable to self-learning and doesn't teach children how to read in 120 hours, let along 12 hours), FUNetix will make a profound impact on millions of individual lives, while also profoundly effecting major social improvement on a massive scale, to bring about real, sustainable change in underprivileged and fully privileged communities and classrooms alike, wherever illiteracy and poor literacy looms. Literacy as a path to education and opportunity for millions of American children, and potentially billions of children worldwide, is imminently near. Through FUNetix, the American Youth Literacy Foundation is making English accessible to everyone!
We have been preparing for this moment for 12 years, but as a matter of pure coincidence, our launch and final developmental timeline is coinciding with other powerful forces in the country and the world, such as COVID and social justice awareness and unrest. Our role in the Coronavirus recovery and this social justice enigma is to lift up and bring real, lasting, permanent life improvement to the more than 12 million 1st, 2nd, and 3rd-grade emerging readers who got knocked down by the Coronavirus and knocked out of school, as so much collateral damage, so that they can get back to learning and education, in a new way, with better results than ever before, as if nothing had ever happened to derail their futures.
Our role in effecting major social improvement, including improvement in areas of education, opportunity, and equality has been at the forefront of our mission and vision since our inception as a charitable foundation in 2008. The convergence of universal forces that are allowing the FUNetix Reading App to fall on such fertile soil is something that we cannot explain.
FUNetix, the team, is a mission-focused, distributed network of currently, 50 people (and still growing), each contributing between 5 and 65 hours of volunteer time per week. Our partnership with Pubbly is contractual, and we pay for engineering, coding, animation, narration, and other services.
There's much more to tell. You can read more about our story, and about us, at www.FUNetix.org and www.YouthLit.org.
If you wish to be considered for this opportunity, please send us a cover letter and resume to HR@YouthLit.org.
Thank you! We hope this opportunity finds you at the right place and the right time in your career to make a difference and an impact, to add value, in an amazing way, to help millions of children who are waiting for someone, or something, to lead them out of a life of impoverishment and into a future of unlimited possibility and potential.
We look forward to hearing from you and speaking with you about the future of literacy in America.
The mission of the American Youth Literacy Foundation is to help ALL American children become literate before they reach the end of 5th grade by providing simple, phonics-based tools and reading curricula, together with training and support, to parents, teachers, tutors and organizations that work directly with students in need.
In support of our mission, Youth Lit develops and directs free after school tutoring programs in association with public libraries, YMCA's and other community outreach organizations. Most of our tutors are high school and college student volunteers who are earning community service credits while making a valuable contribution to their communities.
Children & Youth
Education & Literacy
We'll work with your schedule.
Chicago and VicinityChicago, IL60601
November 16, 2020
Online Flash/Video Production
Web Design / UX
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Periodic meetings with tasking in-between; as much time as you can commit. Your ability to commit time to this will be a determining factor. If you can only commit limited time but still want to participate, we will keep your resume on file.