Volunteers Make a Difference at TAPS
Important information about volunteering at our school
- A volunteer is a member of the community who works within the school
under the direction of a teacher or the principal.
- A volunteer agrees to undertake activities or tasks which support
the school without remuneration.
- A volunteer is willing to commit time to the school on a regular
- A volunteer maintains confidentiality about children and staff and
helps build self-esteem in children.
At school, a volunteer may:
- Assist groups of children with learning
- Read to and with children
- Be active in School Council events / meetings
- Fund raise for the school
- Assist with the School Breakfast Programme
- Assist teachers with classroom duties
- Prepare materials for teachers and classes
- Assist with supervision of trips
- Share special interests with children
- Coach teams
- Assist children in publishing their writing
- Assist with technology / computers
- Prepare bulletin board displays
- Assist on special days or in special events
- Laugh, have fun, and enjoy themselves
Teachers can always use
volunteers in the classroom. The types of work teachers require varies—from
working with students to help them learn in small groups, to photocopying
and preparing materials for the classroom. Often volunteers are needed to
listen to children read, and to read with children. Persons interested in
volunteering in a specific classroom are encouraged to speak directly with
the teacher. Our teachers at TAPS recruit their volunteers for their
There are some programs which the
school runs that need volunteers. The Breakfast Programme requires
volunteers to prepare and serve breakfast to students before school starts.
Often the school needs people to assist with coaching school teams or
refereeing games. Special food days, such as hot dog days, require
volunteers to prepare and distribute the lunches. If you are interested in
volunteering in the manner mentioned above, you should contact the school
office and speak to the principal.
The School Council advises the
principal in school matters and organizes a number of special events that
support the children and community. Volunteering to be a part of the School
Council involves attending monthly meetings. In addition, the Council is
always looking for volunteers for their many projects, such as helping out
at a Special Event or School Barbecue. The Council also does fund raising to
raise money for the students. If this is of interest to you, please attend
the next School Council meeting or contact the school.
Some things to think about when considering volunteering:
How to become a volunteer:
Pre-schoolers may not accompany volunteers to school. Child care
arrangements need to be made. In this way the volunteer‘s attention and
energy can be focused on the needs of the students.
By their very
presence in the school, volunteers become knowledgeable about the school,
the staff and the students. Knowledge is gained about students’ behaviour,
learning abilities, personal and social development and personal
relationships. In some cases, teachers need to impart private information to
volunteers to assist working effectively with a child. Volunteers will
likely form personal opinions about children, their families, or staff.
There is nothing wrong with that, however, in no case should such knowledge
and conclusions be shared with anyone. Students should not live in fear of
having others in the community know about their personal lives, behaviours
or achievement. Care must be taken to refrain from expressing comments
harmful to the reputations of students or staff.
Incidents of suspected
abuse must, by law, be reported to C.A.S. and the school principal
To become involved in your child’s school, you may want to directly
contact the teacher for whom you wish to volunteer. If unsure as to how you
wish to volunteer, contact the school and talk to the principal. If you are
unknown to the school, the principal will require some documentation
as listed below:
The Lambton Kent Board requires volunteers to complete
the following , which can be obtained from the school office:
Volunteer Reference Form
Request for Police Records
Then meet with the principal for orientation and general
The Board’s insurance covers volunteers
for Board approved and school approved activities. For example, if a
volunteer were working with a child and an accident occurred, the Board’s
liability insurance would cover the volunteer and the Board for up to the
$20 million policy limit. The Board does not have “loss of income” insurance
How to be an effective volunteer:
The school appreciates that
volunteer drivers are sometimes needed to transport children to sports
events and field trips. Volunteer drivers must complete the appropriate
volunteer driver form, hold a valid driver’s license, and have up-to-date
car insurance. The Board liability insurance will kick in after the driver’s
insurance has been exhausted, to a combined total of $20 million coverage.
Call the school if you are unable to meet your commitment for that day.
Absenteeism can reduce the effectiveness of a volunteer programme.
Refrain from discussing children or staff outside of the school.
Confidentiality is imperative.
Maintain a positive attitude towards the
children. Give positive feedback and encouragement to children. Refer
discipline matters to the teacher.
In-class volunteers must remember that
they are responsible to the teacher. The teacher will provide direction for
your volunteer activity.
Discuss problems or suggestions with the teacher
or the principal in a timely manner and in a private location.
that a volunteer is not a substitute for a staff member, but a valuable
support for the teacher.
Dress like the staff—always within the school
For your own protection, always work with children with the
door open or in open areas
Remember that the principal has the ultimate
responsibility for all personnel, policy and programmes in the school,
including volunteers. If there are any concerns—be certain to discuss them
with the principal.
Act as a positive role model by
- using appropriate language
following school rules
- demonstrating manners that students are
encouraged to use (knocking before entering, using please / excuse me etc.)