FAQs

For learners:

How do I enter the program?
Learners are encouraged to call the LNY-FMS office at 518-234-2576 to set up an in-take. This will give the LNY-FMS staff a chance to hear your goals and learn about your education. In a few weeks, you will take a TABE test, which will help determine your literacy level. Then you will be matched with a tutor.

Where is the LNY-FMS office?

Cobleskill (Monday-Thursday, 8am-3pm; Friday, 8am-1pm):
United Methodist Church
107 Chapel Street, Suite 2
Cobleskill, NY 12043
Phone: 518-234-2576

Canajoharie (Tuesday & Wednesday, 10am-3pm):
Canajoharie Library
2 Erie Boulevard
Canajoharie, NY 13317
Phone: 518-227-3786

Gloversville (Monday & Thursday, 9am-3:30pm; Tuesday-Group Instruction Only):
73 North Main Street, Suite 101
Gloversville, NY 12078
Phone: 518-725-1440

Fonda - By Appointment Only

How much does LNY-FMS charge?
Tutoring with Literacy New York - Fulton, Montgomery, and Schoharie Counties is free.

How many days a week are the sessions?
Learners meet with their tutor at least one day a week. Extra sessions can be added if the learner and tutor feel the extra time is needed.

How long are the tutoring sessions?
Tutoring sessions are at least one hour long, or longer if the tutor and learner wish.

Will I be in sessions with other learners?
Learners meet one-on-one with their tutors.

Is there a minimum age to be a learner?
Learners must be at least 16 years of age before July 1st of any given school year. There is no maximum age for a learner.

Are the tutors with LNY-FMS teachers?
Tutors are trained before they work with learners. Tutors do not need to have a background as a teacher.

Can I be in school and still be a learner with LNY-FMS?
Learners cannot be enrolled in high school and still be a learner with LNY-FMS.

What programs does LNY-FMS offer?
LNY-FMS offers three programs: Basic Literacy, English Language Learners, and GED Preparatory Instruction. GED Preparatory Instruction is for people trying to get their high school equivalency degree. ELL is for people who desire to better speak and understand English. Basic Literacy is for people who want to improve their general reading and writing skills.

How long can I stay in the program?
There is no maximum time for learners to be in the program.

Will I have to wait for a tutor?
You may have to wait briefly while LNY-FMS finds a tutor whose schedule and background match your needs. All matches are put together as quickly as possible.

Do I choose my tutor?
LNY-FMS matches you with a tutor. The first meeting is held with a LNY-FMS staff member present.

Does LNY-FMS administer the GED?
LNY-FMS does not administer the GED test, but it offers preparation tutoring for the test. LNY-FMS can inform you when and where the test is offered.

How long will it take me to get my GED?
This depends on the level at which you test upon entering the program and your personal level of commitment. Generally, it will take a year, more or less, to obtain your GED.

How do I know when I'm done?
Learners set goals upon entering the program. As the learner learns more, these goals can grow.

What if I don't like my tutor?
Issues between tutor and learner should be brought to LNY-FMS to see if a solution can be reached. If not, learners can be matched with a different tutor.

What happens if I miss a tutoring session?
If you know you are going to miss a session, please call your tutor to let him/her know. If you miss three sessions in six months without informing your tutor, you may be removed from the program.

What if I don't know what program I should be in?
In your first meeting with an LNY-FMS staff member, you will be asked questions to determine your goals and educational background. At a later date you will take a test to determine your literacy level.

For tutors:

What are the requirements for becoming a tutor?
Tutors must be at least 18 years of age, be willing to complete all required training, be able to speak and understand English well enough to communicate clearly, demonstrate reading ability of at least a 12th grade level, complete the tutor intake form, for learner safety have no record of any sex offense or violent crimes, and be able to see well enough to differentiate characters on the printed page.

Do I need a teaching background to be a tutor?
Many of our tutors do not have teaching backgrounds. All tutors, regardless of their background, go through training before working with learners. Tutors also need to attend at least one additional workshop over the course of a year.

Where is the LNY-FMS office?

Cobleskill (Monday-Thursday, 8am-3pm; Friday, 8am-1pm):
United Methodist Church
107 Chapel Street, Suite 2
Cobleskill, NY 12043
Phone: 518-234-2576

Canajoharie (Tuesday & Wednesday, 10am-3pm):
Canajoharie Library
2 Erie Boulevard
Canajoharie, NY 13317
Phone: 518-227-3786

Gloversville (Monday & Thursday, 9am-3:30pm; Tuesday-Group Instruction Only):
73 North Main Street, Suite 101
Gloversville, NY 12078
Phone: 518-725-1440

Fonda - By Appointment Only

How many learners will I have to tutor at one time?
Most tutors work with one learner at a time. You are welcome to tutor more than one learner at a time if you desire.

Is there training to become a tutor?
Yes, there is training. Training sessions are scheduled two-to-three times a year with three-to-four classroom sessions. Tutors are required to attend all classes. Tutors also must attend at least one additional workshop a year, for re-certification purposes. All training LNY-FMS provides to tutors is free.

How often is the tutoring and how long am I expected to tutor?
Tutoring sessions are at least once a week, with sessions lasting between one and two hours. Most tutors have stay with us for five years, but we request a minimum of one year.

What happens if I am unable to meet with my learner?
Please call your learner and let them know that you will be unable to attend.

Does LNY-FMS provide lesson plans and a curriculum for my learner?
At the first meeting with your learner, you will be given the appropriate resources and suggestions to best meet your learner's needs.

Do I need to buy the textbooks and materials I need to tutor?
LNY-FMS provides materials for tutors to use with their learners, although tutors are welcome to search for additional materials.

Do I decide which learner I will tutor?
LNY-FMS will match you with a learner, and the initial meeting will be held with an LNY-FMS staff member.

Where do I meet with my learner?
Tutors meet with their learners in public places such as libraries or churches. Under no circumstances do tutors go to a learner's house or provide transportation for their learner.

How old do I have to be in order to be a tutor?
Tutors must be at least 18 years of age.

What level of education do I need to tutor?
Tutors must demonstrate at least a 12th grade reading level and be able to clearly speak and understand English. They must be able to attend to a task for at least 60 minutes.

What types of learners does LNY-FMS serve?
LNY-FMS serves adult learners (16 years or older) who are not currently enrolled in high school.

What do I do if I don't like my learner?
Issues between learners and tutors should be directed to the LNY-FMS staff. If a solution cannot be found, both will be matched with another candidate.

Can I tutor if I used to be a learner?
Yes. A learner who has successfully met their own literacy goals will have a uniqute outlook on teaching others.

I don't have time to tutor, but are there other ways I can contribute?
There are many other ways to contribute. You can volunteer at one of our events, or donate money or educational materials. Please contact the Literacy New York office at 518-234-2576 with questions.