May 30, 2013
For more information: Sherriene Jones-Sontag
Kansas Kickoffs Read Kansas Read
Governor stresses importance of Kansas children reading during the summer
Topeka – About 30 Kansas children from the YWCA in Topeka joined Governor Sam Brownback at the Kansas State Library Thursday to help him kick off the 2nd Annual Read Kansas Read. The statewide summer reading program is a collaborative effort by the Governor’s Office, Kansas Book Festival, Kansas State Library and the Kansas State Department of Education to challenge Kansas children to read while they aren’t in school.
“For most of the calendar year, students are working hard in the classroom to improve their literacy skills,” Governor Brownback said. “During the summer, however, too many don’t continue to develop their reading skills. Read Kansas Read is designed to be a fun way to help children bridge the gap between classroom learning in the spring and the fall.”
First Lady Mary Brownback, State Librarian Jo Budler, and State Education Commissioner Dr. Diane DeBacker joined the Governor for the launch of the summer reading program.
Dr. DeBacker emphasized the importance of reading during the summer months and choosing books that are of interest to the children and at their reading levels.
“I also want to encourage Kansas children to visit their local libraries this summer,” DeBacker said. “Librarians across the state are waiting for you to come in and say “The Governor told me to read this summer!”
State Librarian Budler said the State Library is using its library network to encourage local library participation.
“Libraries are natural partners for summer reading. With more than 320 libraries and at least one in every county, participating in a summer reading program couldn’t be easier,” Budler said. “The library community knows that when children read, they are more likely to become life-long learners, so the State Library and the library community are happy to partner with the Governor and promote summer reading.”
In September, the Governor and First Lady will recognize the top readers in each age group in the seven library regions as “Notable Kansas Readers” at an awards ceremony held at the Kansas Book Festival in September. Mrs. Brownback said all participating libraries will be entered to receive by random drawing a $500 prize from the Kansas Book Festival.
“The KBF’s mission is to promote literacy and a life-long love of reading among all Kansans. The Read Kansas Read program is an excellent opportunity to get younger Kansans excited about reading and learning. The KBF is honored to be recognizing the winning library with a $500 prize,” First Lady Brownback said.
Governor Brownback said Kindergarteners – 12th grade students interested in participating can sign up at the local library or download their own book tracking form from the program’s website, www.ReadKansasRead.ks.gov. The students’ reading logs are due by August 12th.
“I want to challenge every Kansas student to read as many books as they can this summer. This year we want readers to track how many minutes they read. My goal is to read at least an hour every week,” Brownback said. “And as an additional incentive, all reading logs will be entered into the random drawing to win one of five $25 gift certificates.”
After the Governor read “Duck Rabbit”, he and the First Lady passed out books to the children from the Kansas Book Festival and Reading is Fundamental.
For more information, visit www.ReadKansasRead.ks.gov.
RKR1: State Librarian Jo Budler encouraged Kansas children to read during the summer. Also on hand from L to R were State Education Commissioner Dr. Diane DeBacker, Governor Brownback and First Lady Mary Brownback.
RKR2: Governor Brownback reads “Duck Rabbit” to children from the YWCA in Topeka.