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"If You Give a Child a Book..." Campaign visits Bradford Elementary

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Posted at 7:03 PM, Mar 02, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-03 21:11:38-05

PUEBLO — As part of the E.W. Scripps Company, News5 has partnered with Scholastic Books to bring the children of Bradford Elementary new books.

Today, every student in Kindergarten through Fifth Grade were able two pick out four brand new book, completely free of charge.

“Lots of students come to the world blessed with so many wonderful things and the best thing they could be blessed with is a book," said Third Grade Online Teacher Cassidy Platt. "Books take them on adventures that they might not be able to do, or create a passion that you can't just get, so when you give a child a book, you really give them a future.”

"If You Give a Child a Book..." Campaign is funded through Scripps Howard Foundation that donates books to select Title 1 Schools -- schools with a majority of students on free or reduced lunches. The goal is to provide books to kids in most need. This year, the foundation raised $12,000, which is enough money to give 646 students across the region 5 books each.

Platt says now, in the midst of the pandemic, providing students access to books while they're at home is especially important.

"It’s really important that right now we’re giving the kids as many resources as we can to be successful... Not every student has an equal amount of books, so this opportunity to come and pick out a book is huge!”

News5's Elizabeth Watts read to 3rd graders at Queen Palmer Elementary last month, another Title 1 School selected from Colorado Springs. From her home studio, she met virtually with Ms. Hleovas' class to read "Say Something" by Peter H. Reynolds.

This campaign focuses on early literacy efforts because literacy rates are directly related to school dropout, unemployment, and poverty. Students with books at home correlate to higher reading scores, and those who read by third grade are more likely to succeed in school and careers.

In 2020, the Scripps Howard Foundation efforts raised more than $825,000 to purchase more than 165,000 books. It's estimated the donated books can generate 30,960,000 reading minutes from impacted children.

A significant marker for educational success occurs when most children are only 8 or 9 years old. A student's reading proficiency by the end of third grade can impact the rest of her or his education.

  • A child who can’t read at grade level by third grade is four times less likely to graduate from high school. If this same child lives in poverty, 13 times less likely to graduate.
  • But 61% of low-income families have zero books at home

Please join us in our mission to empower children in need with the literacy tools they need to be successful in school and in life by donating to the “If You Give a Child a Book … ” Campaign.