A partnership is an arrangement in which parties agree to work together to advance a common goal.
The offices of the City of Sherwood reached out to the AR Kids Read team to begin a partnership with
the common goal of having children in the area read at grade level by the end of fourth grade. Both
parties want to invest in the next generation for the benefit of their community.
Mayor Virginia Hillman and the employees of the City of Sherwood have chosen to tutor at
Cato Elementary in Gravel Ridge. Even though there is an elementary school just behind their offices,
they chose to partner with Cato because “it is in a high needs area of our city, and the children need
the extra time and attention.”
Cato’s principal Shyrel Lee is thrilled to have the tutors from the City of Sherwood. Lee believes that
“the partnership means that the City of Sherwood is committed to actively taking ownership in helping
the students achieve.”
Lee and Hillman are both avid proponents of the AR Kids Read tutoring model because of the extra
attention the students are given that they do not receive outside the classroom. Lee said “many of our
students may not get the support after they leave school” or have access to additional helpful resources.
That is where the tutors from the City of Sherwood can fill that void. Lee also added “the tutors will help
build relationships and foster good reading habits with students.”
Hillman wanted to give the children at Cato something that would last them a lifetime, and that is a
foundation in reading. “Reading can take you places that you can never go physically,” Hillman said.
She knows reading was fundamental in helping her accomplish all that she has in life.
The relationship between AR Kids Read, the City of Sherwood, and Cato Elementary is an incredible
model of a true partnership; separate entities coming together for the common good of a community.
The employees of the City of Sherwood are striving for the common good of the next generation of
leaders, and reading is the ticket to their future.