Volunteer tutors push literacy forward for Wimauma kids

- Students at Wimauma Elementary School are having a good time learning to read in the Parents and Children Advance Together (PCAT) Literacy Program. 

Christene Worley started the program 15 years ago after noticing some kids at her church weren't reading as well as they could be.

Worley went to the Hillsborough County Children's Board seeking help and ideas.

"They told me if I wanted to make a difference in their lives I needed to start a program," said Worley.

With their support, she created the non-profit PCAT. It's now spread out to several schools in Hillsborough County.

Volunteers help tutor kids at no cost with reading and reading comprehension, so they don't fall behind.

"If these children don't get some type of academic intervention, they might not be promoted to the next grade," explained Worley.

"We have a large amount of our population that are English language learners. So even though our students speak English, that other parent at home speaks Spanish or with a dialect, so they don't have anybody that they can practice with at home," said Wimauma Elementary principal Ismael Lebron-Bravo.

With the help of PCAT, about 95 percent of students are advancing in school and getting a leg up in life.  

"They get the confidence that they need so they can succeed so they can read," said Worley.

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