Volunteering in schools SRO

We are recruiting passionate, committed and enthusiastic students to take part in our Volunteering in Schools programmes! 

The Outreach Team at Aston provide opportunities for students to undertake outreach work in local primary and secondary schools. 

Our programmes are a great way to give back to the local community whilst enhancing your university experience, developing your leadership skills and making you more employable. 

Interested and want to learn more? Sign up to one of our information sessions below:

  • Wed 26th Sept, 1-2pm, G63
  • Thurs 27th Sept, 1-2pm, G63
  • Tues 2nd Oct, 1-2pm, G11
  • Weds 3rd Oct, 1-2pm, G11

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There are 3 programmes available for this academic year: 

1. Reading Stars - Undergraduate reading mentors for pupils in Years 5-9

What is Reading Stars? 

Reading Stars is a volunteering scheme where students support primary and secondary school pupils (Years 5 – 9) with their reading. Reading is such an important skill in life; you could play a part in helping learners develop their reading abilities. 

What do Reading Star Volunteers do? 

If you take part in this scheme, you will be placed in local primary or secondary school where you will work either on a one-to-one basis or in small groups, helping learners with their reading.  

You will receive comprehensive training to cover techniques you can use and guidance on how to run the sessions.  

Specific content of the sessions is set out by the individual schools and you may work with different learners and/or on different tasks each week. 

When would I be volunteering? 

The Reading Stars programme lasts for 10 weeks and you will be in the school for around 2 hours each week. Student volunteers are expected to commit to the full 10 weeks in order to complete the scheme and qualify for certification. We individually match you to a school based on your availability and never ask you to miss lectures to attend sessions. 

Where would I be volunteering? 


Aston University has strong links with local primary and secondary schools. The Outreach team will individually match you to a school that is within easy travelling distance from the university or, if you live at home, from there. We try not to place volunteers anywhere that would take you more than 45 minutes to get to on public transport, and many schools are much closer than this. All public transport expenses are reimbursed so you won't be out of pocket for dedicating your time to volunteering.

 

2. Boost! - undergraduate learning assistants for pupils in Years 10-13

What is ‘Boost!’?  

Boost! is a highly rewarding volunteering programme where Aston University students volunteer a morning or afternoon a week for 10 weeks in a local secondary or post 16 school. Working with students in years 10-13 across a full range of exam classes, our volunteers aim to boost the self-confidence, motivation and attainment of the young people they work with. 

What do Boost! volunteers do?
 

Taking direction from the classroom teacher, Boost! volunteers provide additional support or challenge for up to 6 pupils per class over an 8 – 12 week period. 

The core aims of the programme are to: 

  1. Boost pupils’ self confidence 
  2. Boost pupils’ motivation 
  3. Boost pupils’ attainment 

When would I be volunteering? 

The programme lasts for 10 weeks and you will be in the school for around 2 hours each week. Boost! volunteers are expected to commit to the full 10 weeks in order to complete the scheme and qualify for certification. We individually match you to a school based on your availability and never ask you to miss lectures to attend sessions. 

Where will I be volunteering?

Aston University has strong links with secondary schools. The Outreach team will individually match you to a school that is within easy travelling distance from the university or, if you live at home, from there. We try not to place volunteers anywhere that would take you more than 45 minutes to get to on public transport, and many schools are much closer than this. All public transport expenses are reimbursed so you won't be out of pocket for dedicating your time to volunteering.

 

3. The Access Project - Volunteer Tutors

What is this scheme?

Aston University are working in partnership with the education charity, The Access Project, to provide personalised GCSE tuition to bright students from disadvantaged backgrounds, helping them gain access to top universities. We are primarily looking for Tutors in Maths and Science, but students interested in tutoring in other subjects are welcome to apply. A minimum of A Level Grade B is required in the subject in which you are looking to tutor.

What do Volunteer Tutors do? 

Volunteer tutors will work in one on one tutoring sessions with GCSE age pupils from local schools to provide additional support to bright students from disadvantaged backgrounds. 

When would I be volunteering? 

Tutors are expected to complete at least 15 one hour sessions in order to complete the scheme and qualify for certification. These sessions would be based on your availability and you would never be asked to miss lectures to attend the sessions.

Where will I be volunteering? 

Sessions will take place on campus at Aston University within a public place which is convenient to you. This Access Project has strong links with a number of secondary schools with whom they have been working with for a number of years. 

The schemes have been running for several years at Aston University.

There are numerous benefits for volunteering, including: 

  • Making a positive difference to the children in the local community
  • Enhance your University experience
  • Improve your communication skills with different groups of people
  • Improve your career prospects 

Many of the schools we work with really need support in giving children one-to-one support with reading. This can make a huge difference to the children's achievement and progress.

Previous students have described their time on the schemes as: 

  • Rewarding
  • Good work experience and a great way to develop employability skills
  • Fun!
All volunteers will receive a University certificate which will acknowledge students volunteering contributions.  Your volunteering hours will also be added to your student record.

Volunteers are invited to the annual Outreach celebration lunch which takes place in May. We also encourage all students to register their volunteering hours with Changemakers and the 'V' Award, which is a nationally recognised award.

Most importantly, you will make a difference to schools and young people in the community and help them achieve their full potential.


Student Testimonies

Amy SRO

‘I am so glad I was able to take on this opportunity and definitely hope to continue with something similar in the near future before applying for the scheme again next year. Thanks Outreach team!’

Amy Evans-Rayner 
First Year Psychology student

Amrita SRO


‘I have used the Volunteering in Schools project as an example in several interviews as it demonstrates my willingness to help others as well as my communication and teaching skills.’

Amrita Ahluwalia 
Second Year Accounting for Management student