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Working In The Schools (WITS)

Cause Area

  • Children & Youth
  • Community
  • Education & Literacy


150 N. Wacker DriveSuite 1120Chicago, IL 60606 United States

Organization Information

Mission Statement

Working in the Schools - WITS believes that literacy is the foundation on which all other learning develops. Our mission is to empower Chicago elementary students to discover themselves through reading while developing foundational literacy skills. We do this by creating community through literacy-based mentorship, enabling teachers to build diverse classroom libraries, and promoting book ownership at home.


WITS programs develop trusting and fun relationships between adults and students with the intention of developing the mindset for learning in elementary school students. WITS Kindergarten mentors read one-on-one with kindergarten students, helping them build book and print awareness, letter name and sound recognition, as well as developing a lifelong love of reading. WITSK volunteers commit to working with the same students once a week for 60-90 minutes from October-May.

Mid-Day Mentoring (MDM) supports 2nd and 3rd grade students during the later stages of the transition from learning to read and reading to learn. This significant, and often difficult, milestone requires students to exercise strong foundational literacy skills in order to comprehend increasingly challenging curriculum. Volunteers travel to the school and are paired with the same student for an entire school year. Volunteer-student pairs spend time reading aloud and building comprehension skills through conversation. MDM mentors make a weekly or bi-weekly commitment from October-May.


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