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Summer of Reading Press Release June 5, 2013

Print Press Release PDF                                                             Summer of Reading Proclamations

For immediate release:  June 5, 2013

Contact:          Alison S. Kelley, MarionCounty Community Services

                        Department Director, 503-588-7975 or akelley@co.marion.or.us

Summer of Reading in Marion County

Salem, OR - As we approach summer vacation, Reading for All is promoting the “Summer of Reading” as a way to raise awareness among parents, grandparents, and caregivers about the importance of summer reading.   Why do kids need to read over the summer? It is simple. If kids don’t read, they will find themselves going down the “Summer Slide”– this is not the playground slide, but rather the loss of reading and learning skills that occur during the long break from school.  The single most effective way to combat the “summer slide” is to read.

To support this important message, the Marion County Board of Commissioners will consider signing a proclamation proclaiming this summer as the “Summer of Reading in Marion County” at their June 12, 2013 Board meeting.  “Parents and relatives can be involved by visiting and taking children to the local library regularly, registering youth for summer reading and other activity programs, and asking youth to journal about their summer experiences.  These activities can help youth avoid that “summer slide” by practicing the skills gained during the school year,” said Marion County Commissioner Sam Brentano.

The National Summer Learning Association states, “Most students lose about two months of grade level equivalency in mathematical computation skills over the summer months.  Low income students also lose more than two months in reading achievement, despite the fact that their middle class peers make slight gains.”

The “Summer of Reading” project reminds parents, caregivers, educators, policymakers, and the general public that children and teens need ongoing opportunities to learn and practice essential skills during the summer months.  Cities in MarionCounty considering the proclamation include Aumsville, Gervais, Hubbard, Jefferson, Keizer, Lyons, Mt.Angel, Salem, and Silverton.

Parents and other caregivers can take a few simple steps to encourage the children and youth in their care to read over the summer:

  • Give your kids the power of choice – kids say they are more likely to finish a book they have picked out themselves. Make a point to help your child find books that appeal to his or her interests.
  • Read every day. Whether kids read print books or ebooks, the more they read, the better readers they become, and the better readers they become, the more they enjoy reading. Map out at least 20 minutes each day for reading.
  • Make books accessible. Having books available is key to helping kids love to read.
  • Participate in a summer reading program.  Organizations and libraries throughout MarionCounty offer fun, exciting reading opportunities for children, youth, and families all summer long.

Visit http://reading4all.com/ for more information, and to find a summer reading program in your area.  Find your local library by visiting http://www.co.marion.or.us/CS/CFC/Findhelp/libraries.htm.  For more information about summer learning loss visit the National Summer Learning Association’s website at http://www.summerlearning.org/.

Reading for All is an initiative that seeks to promote community literacy by identifying and aligning resources in Marion County.  Reading for All seeks to increase the County’s awareness of and commitment to literacy by encouraging adults to read to children, and by increasing the number of books and reading opportunities available.   For more information contact Arturo Vargas, Reading for All, Marion County Community Services Department, 503-588-7975.

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