Tutoring at Motels, Libraries, and Schools

When would I tutor at one of these locations, and what’s it like?

  • Tutoring at non-shelter locations occurs when students are living in motels, cars, or on the street or when it is more convenient for a shelter family to meet at a different location. 
  • Schools: Tutoring takes place after school hours until around 5, usually during an after-school program. School on Wheels has partnership agreements with many schools in Southern California. Location may be cafeteria, gymnasium, or designated classroom. 
  • Libraries: Tutoring takes place after school hours until closure (usually 8 p.m. or earlier depending on the branch). There is also a possibility for weekend tutoring depending on family schedule. Library staff designates areas for tutoring, usually in the children’s section or at reading tables. 
  • Motels: While less common, sometimes tutoring can be set up at motel locations where students are living, usually in an office space or lobby area. 

General Guidelines and Protocols: 

  • Familiarize yourself with the location’s specific rules and regulations. 
  • If you are tutoring in a public space such as a library, only do so in designated areas in full view of staff and other adults/tutors. Do not tutor in a private room.
  • Communicate with your regional coordinator if for any reason you feel unsafe in a location, especially in a motel setting.
  • If you are tutoring at a library or motel, student’s parent/guardian must attend each session and stay within shouting and sight distance. Tutors working at schools should stay within sight of staff and/or other tutors and teachers. 
  • Always respect student and family confidentiality; i.e. don’t tell staff that the student you are working with is homeless.

Tutoring Tips: 

  • Take advantage of resources at schools and libraries to aid you in your sessions. At libraries, you may have access to computers and you will have access to books for reading practice. At schools, programs may have supplies to help engage students; ask staff what is available for your use. 
  • Be mindful of other patrons and students when tutoring in a quiet shared space, especially when working with young or excited children. 
  • Check library operating hours before changing meeting times. Communicate any changes to your regional coordinator. 
  • It is more common for parents to be late or miss sessions at these types of locations; be prepared for no-shows and always contact your student’s parent/guardian on the day of tutoring to remind them.