Monday, January 25, 2016

Redlands Library hires first full-time literacy coordinator

REDLANDS: Library hires first full-time literacy coordinator
New library coordinator in Redlands will help bolster programs in adult literacy effort
Press Enterprise: 1.22.2016 by Penny E Schwartz

After five years as a volunteer tutor, Diane Shimota has become the first full-time paid coordinator of the adult literacy program at A.K. Smiley Library in Redlands.

A combination of money allocated by the city last year for a part-time coordinator and grant money from the state has enabled the Redlands program to hire a full-time coordinator for the first time.

“Diane’s experience as a tutor and as a computer teacher make her perfect for the position,” said principal librarian Daniel Slota.

Tutoring always has been part of her job, said Shimota, who has worked in the computer mapping and forestry and fire protection fields.

Through tutoring in the adult literacy program, she has worked with learners of varying levels of language competency. “They have had different goals and needs,” she said of the adults she has tutored at Smiley Library and the off-site facility at Clement Middle School.

Tutoring adult literacy students is rewarding when they can accomplish their goals, said Shimota, a Redlands resident. “When they can read a whole story or go to the doctor by themselves, I find it fulfilling,” she said.

She also dubs herself a “champion for computer literacy” and has taught a series of computer classes to learners in the program. “In order to succeed in today’s world, people need basic computer skills,” she said.

The responsibilities of her new position will include working with the state library system as well as with the program’s 70 pairs of learners and tutors, who usually meet weekly for lessons and quarterly for round-table discussions. She will schedule assessment sessions with a backlog of applicants to pair them with their best matches as tutors, she said.  READ MORE @

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