Educational Institutions

Literacy Council of Montgomery County Maryland, Inc.

  • Rockville, MD
  • www.literacycouncilmcmd.org

Mission Statement

The Literacy Council of Montgomery County, MD, Inc. was founded in 1963. Our mission is to enable adults to transform their lives and enrich our community through English literacy.

Main Programs

  1. Tutoring Program
  2. ESL Classroom Program
  3. Workplace Literacy Program
Service Areas

Self-reported

Maryland

Montgomery County, MD
DC Metro Area

ruling year

1968

Principal Officer

Self-reported

Mrs. Danielle Verbiest

Keywords

Self-reported

Adult Literacy, English as a Second Language, Volunteer Tutors

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Also Known As

LCMC

EIN

52-0852549

 Number

6477934525

Contact

Cause Area (NTEE Code)

Education N.E.C. (B99)

IRS Filing Requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

Programs + Results

How does this organization make a difference?

Overview

Self-reported by organization

Our programs enable our learners to transform their lives by becoming more proficient in reading, writing, speaking and understanding English so that they can reach their full potential as parents, employees, and community members. Our students use their English and literacy skills to obtain jobs and get better jobs, become U.S. citizens, support their children's education, and communicate more effectively with their healthcare providers. By fostering an English literacy community, we help build a stronger economy, provide individuals with a pathway out of poverty, and contribute to a prepared workforce.

Programs

Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Program 1

Tutoring Program

LCMC's Basic Literacy and ESL Tutoring Program is a volunteer-based tutoring program which began in 1963 to teach adults who were unable to read, write, speak, and understand English, and to do so in a cost-effective way with the help of community volunteers. Volunteer tutors, trained by certified Pro-Literacy trainers, meet weekly with their students either one-on-one or in small groups using the Laubach Way to English curriculum. LCMC staff interviews and assesses students throughout the year and provides necessary support to the volunteer tutors.

Category

Population(s) Served

Adults

Budget

Program 2

ESL Classroom Program

LCMC's ESL Classroom Program offers intensive ESL classes that provide 75 hours of ESL instruction led by professional ESL teachers. The program has a well-established system of managed enrollment; three semesters of class offerings; morning, evening and weekend classes; a comprehensive learner orientation to help set expectations and improve persistence; pre- and post-testing using CASAS Life and Work assessments; and a portion of classes focusing on workforce readiness skills. Classes are held at multiple locations throughout the county.

Category

Population(s) Served

Adults

Budget

Program 3

Workplace Literacy Program

LCMC offers customized English language instruction to improve the communication skills of employees both on and off the job. We offer an integrated program model in which we focus on English language skills, workplace literacy, and industry needs.

Category

Population(s) Served

Adults

Budget

Charting Impact

Self-reported by organization

Five powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

  1. What is the organization aiming to accomplish?
    Our goals are to provide a broad array of instructional options to meet adult learners' varied needs; to offer that instruction at little or no cost to those learners, at times and in locations convenient to them; and to constantly improve our programs with ongoing professional development and support for both paid and volunteer teachers/tutors.

  2. What are the organization's key strategies for making this happen?
    The Literacy Council offers individualized learning environments through one-on-one tutoring, conversation classes, as well as intensive standards-based classroom instruction and workplace literacy classes. Services are provided to adult speakers of other languages and native-born adults in need of improving their English literacy skills.
  3. What are the organization's capabilities for doing this?
    Since 1963, LCMC has been delivering high-quality English instruction to adult learners in a highly effective way. Our strengths include:
    • Mission: LCMC's sole focus is on language acquisition and literacy.
    • Free to low-cost: Students in LCMC's programs do not pay for instruction. Learners in the tutoring program pay a one-time $15.00 registration fee and are provided books and materials at no cost. LCMC's ESL classroom students pay an average of $50 for their books per session.
    • Continuum of services: LCMC provides a variety of learning pathways for students at all levels through individual and small group tutoring, ESL classes, computer language lab, and conversation classes.
    • Population: Unlike other organizations offering ESL instruction, LCMC also provides basic literacy services to native-English speakers.
    • Location: LCMC's tutors and students meet at mutually convenient locations throughout Montgomery County. LCMC's classroom sites are located in high-need areas around Montgomery County.
    • Staffing: LCMC leverages the efforts of hundreds of volunteers in our programs to assist staff and teachers. Adult literacy volunteers, trained and certified by our organization, teach adults in our tutoring programs. Additional volunteers assist our paid instructors in our classroom programs.
    • Flexibility: LCMC gives students many options: our tutoring program is designed to meet individualized needs; students can learn at their own pace; students and tutors can adjust meeting time/place if necessary; classes and tutoring programs include day, evening and weekend options. These choices are critical for students who need flexible scheduling to accommodate work or family obligations. Students may move from one LCMC program to another as their skills progress or their needs change.
    • Low barrier/ comfort factor: Many of our adult learners with poor English skills find it easier to approach a community organization like LCMC and receive a more personalized service. Native-born learners who need confidentiality, and for whom classrooms have meant failure, seek out the LCMC's private, one-on-one tutoring program.

    Our strength in delivering our services was recognized by the Library of Congress. In October of 2015, LCMC received a Best Practice Award for Selecting Appropriate Language of Instruction as one in fourteen national and international organizations selected for this honor.
  4. How will they know if they are making progress?
    We measure the success of our programs in several ways. First of all, we collect statistical data (obtained from pre- and post- testing in the classroom programs and monthly tutor reports in the tutoring program) to indicate whether our students are experiencing educational gains and accomplishing life goals.

    In addition, classroom teachers conduct mid-point progress meetings with each student at approximately the half-way point in the 10-week session.

    Finally, we ask our students to review our services and report on their achievement. This allows us to assess the effectiveness of our services and to make adjustments if needed should the needs of our learners change.
  5. What have and haven't they accomplished so far?
    Since its inception in 1963, LCMC has served over 20,000 adult learners in our community and we currently serve over 1,750 adults annually with the support of over 600 volunteers.

    Behind every learner we serve lies a story. A story of struggle, commitment and perseverance. In FY16, we were able to serve 1,780 adults. That is 1,780 unique stories. And by serving our learners, we also impact their families, friends, neighbors, coworkers, and the community at large. Please take a moment to read the stories of two of our students: Vejdan and Angeline.

    'Vejdan is originally from Iran. A professional in his home country, he knew he had to improve his English language skills to work in the United States. Vejdan enrolled in our Understanding the American Workplace class in Germantown. In addition to improving his English skills, Vejdan practiced interview skills and updated his resume. During the class session, Vejdan got a job as an Uber Driver. By the end of the session, Vejdan was hired as an MCPS bus driver.'

    'Angeline arrived to the United States from Indonesia a number of years ago and spoke little English. Angeline and her husband have three children, now ages 10, 9, and 7 who are here with them in the United States. She has devoted her time to being an active mother, wife, and homemaker. Angeline is a good ESOL student, with an active and serious approach to language learning. She understands the importance of practicing English constantly which she does with her classmates, friends and on Facebook. At home, the rule in the home is that the family speaks Indonesian only on weekends. Her children attend magnet schools and are very involved in several after school activities. Angeline is also very involved in PTA, for the benefit of her children and other children in Montgomery County Public Schools.'

    Unfortunately, there are many people like Vejdan and Angeline who need our help. Our wait list currently stands around 400 which is not surprising knowing that there are 130,000 Montgomery County residents who are Limited English Proficient. The Literacy Council is therefore committed to continue to expand our services.
Service Areas

Self-reported

Maryland

Montgomery County, MD
DC Metro Area

External Reviews

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Financials

Financial information is an important part of gauging the short- and long-term health of the organization.

LITERACY COUNCIL OF MONTGOMERY COUNTY MARYLAND INC
Fiscal year: Jul 01-Jun 30
Yes, financials were audited by an independent accountant.

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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

Literacy Council of Montgomery County Maryland, Inc.

Leadership

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Free: Gain immediate access to the following:
  • Address, phone, website and contact information
  • Forms 990 for 2016, 2015 and 2014
  • Board Chair and Board Members
  • Access to the GuideStar Community
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Principal Officer

Mrs. Danielle Verbiest

BIO

Danielle has extensive experience in nonprofit operations, communications, and development, as well as project management experience in the private sector. Prior to joining LCMC in 2014, Danielle served as assistant director of development and communications for the Montgomery County Coalition for the Homeless and has held positions at the Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) Program of Montgomery County and Bridgestone Netherlands. Danielle holds an M.A. in International Non-Governmental Organizations and a B.A. in Oriental Languages and Communication.

A native of Holland, Danielle is a polyglot — in addition to speaking English as a second language, she has studied Mandarin, German and French. “I strongly believe in the work of the Literacy Council. Language is such an important skill and critical for people to reach their full potential."

Governance

BOARD CHAIR

Jim Hastings

BOARD LEADERSHIP PRACTICES

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BOARD ORIENTATION & EDUCATION

Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations?


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CEO OVERSIGHT

Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year?


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ETHICS & TRANSPARENCY

Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year?


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BOARD COMPOSITION

Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership?


RESPONSE NOT PROVIDED

BOARD PERFORMANCE

Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years?