Policies and Procedures
New tutors interview and are matched with sites based on site needs and schedule compatibility.
Continuing tutors have the option of returning to their previous site or choosing a new assignment.
Program coordinators and lead tutors are responsible for making final site assignments.
Tutors and lead tutors are expected to meet the obligations of their work schedule in a timely and consistent manner. Planning and debriefing sessions are a mandatory part of all tutors’ schedules.
- Excused Absences
There are certain situations in which absences are excused, such as those relating to serious illness, religious holidays, and personal emergencies. If a tutor needs to be absent for any of these reasons, he or she should contact his or her lead tutor in advance. At the beginning of each semester, lead tutors and their tutors should establish primary and secondary systems of notification. Under no circumstances should a lead tutor arrive at a site to find that a tutor is missing without having provided previous notification. Some programs may also require that tutors contact the site directly regarding expected absences. Tutors are responsible for knowing their site’s procedures regarding absences.
- Unexcused Absences
Unexcused absences include missing transportation, studying for a test, writing a paper, attending a group study session, or leaving early for a holiday or weekend. BUILD tutors are expected to control these factors and schedule their time accordingly. Penalties for unexcused absences:
- First incident: a verbal warning from the lead tutor and a formal review of the site’s attendance policy.
- Second incident: a written warning.
- Third incident: meeting with program coordinators followed by a probationary period.
- Further absences: dismissal from the program.
The BUILD program does not allow tutors to attend field trips as part of their paid work schedule.
We understand that many of our sites take children on field trips. While the BUILD Advisory Committee agrees that these have educational value for the children, we do not believe that the tutor’s presence is necessary. The BUILD tutor’s job is to provide literacy tutoring to children, and although field trips may be related to literacy, tutors do not actually coach a child in literacy skills while on a field trip. Without actually attending the trip, tutors can assist children in follow-up reading and writing activities.
Volunteering for Field Trips
There may be times when a tutor feels that it is important to participate in a field trip. In these instances, the tutor may attend only as a volunteer and will NOT be paid.
Tutors who choose to volunteer on field trips must never assume responsibility for the safety or supervision of the children. As a volunteer, the tutor should be responsible only for discussion with the children about the experience, translation if children are English Language Learners, and enjoying the trip with the group.
- University Vacations Tutors are not expected to work during Boston University vacations, study periods, or final exams, or school vacation weeks. Lead tutors are responsible for informing site coordinators, in advance, of tutor schedule changes associated with vacations. If site programs are operating and tutors wish to continue working, they must obtain approval from their lead tutors. Working during BU vacations requires careful monitoring of Work-Study award levels and advanced planning of timesheet submission. If lead tutors wish to work during University vacations, their funds will be reviewed before approval is given.
- Boston Public Schools Vacations Some after-school programs continue to operate during public school vacations. In-school programs do not operate during these periods. Lead tutors are responsible for notifying tutors, in advance, of all holiday schedules.
When there is extreme weather, Boston area schools and programs may close for the day. BUILD tutors should listen to WBUR (90.9 FM) or WBZ (1030 AM), visit boston.com, or watch the television news for school cancellations.
Lead tutors and their teams should establish a process of notification. Tutors should not call program coordinators to find out if they must work.
BUILD enforces a strict dress code at all sites.
Tutors are required to follow the dress codes of the schools and community centers in which they work. Shorts, halter-tops, bare midriffs, ripped or transparent clothing, and exposed undergarments are not permitted.
Tutors need to be acutely aware of the impression they have on children. Wearing neat and clean clothing shows respect for the job as well as the children.
Penalties for dress code violations:
- First incident: a verbal warning and an official review of the dress code policy.
- Second incident: a written warning.
- Third incident: dismissal from the program.
Tutors who wear inappropriate clothing will be sent home for the day without pay.
Child Abuse and Neglect
All tutors and lead tutors are mandated reporters, meaning that they are required by law to report any suspicion of child abuse or neglect.
Lead tutors should address this issue with site coordinators in order to be sure of site policies. Site policies should be clearly communicated to the tutor teams at the beginning of each semester.
Tutors and lead tutors should seek assistance from the program coordinators if they have any concerns about this issue.
Most tutors access their sites by public transportation, but transportation is provided for two sites:
- Mason & Trotter Elementary Schools: Zipcars are provided.
Accidents and Breakdowns
In the event of a traffic accident, an Accident Report should be filled out immediately. A BUILD Health and Safety Incident Report should also be submitted. If there is damage to another vehicle, contact BU Risk Management at 617-353-3020, and that office will contact the other vehicle’s driver. Drivers should also notify graduate coordinators at the office at 617-353-5192.
Monitoring Work-Study Awards
Tutors can be given a Work-Study award of up to $3,000 for the academic year. At a pay rate of $13.25 per hour, this award amount generally allows a tutor to work an average of 8 hours per week.
Tutors are expected to monitor their award balances to ensure that they do not run out of funds before the end of the academic year. This information is available in the Work section of the Student Link, under Work-Study Award Information.
The tutor contract requires that all tutors fulfill the full academic year obligation at their sites. Tutors must work until the last day of university classes each semester. Work during study period and finals week is optional.
Tutor employment will be terminated when all Work-Study funds are expended.
Tutors may not work for BUILD on a volunteer basis.
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BUILD does not run a summer program. There are insufficient funds and little leadership to supervise tutors.