ECS Celebrates National Reading Month 2024

Eureka City Schools Kicks Off National Reading Month with Engagement and Awareness
Posted on 03/01/2024

March 1, 2024 - Eureka, CA - March is National Reading Month, which includes Dr. Suess's Birthday and Read Across America week. Eureka City Schools (ECS) sees National Reading Month as a significant opportunity to encourage reading and foster a love of books for our students. 

“Literacy lays the foundation for our futures. A love of reading ignites the spark of curiosity, creativity, and connection with all things real and imagined,” said ECS Superintendent Gary Storts. 

ECS has planned various reading activities throughout March and is kicking them off with our four elementary schools. In honor of Read Across America week (the first week of March), our elementary school classrooms will be visited by guest readers consisting of ECS Board members, administrators, retired teachers, elected officials, law enforcement, environmentalists, and other local leaders.

"Lafayette Elementary loves to celebrate Read Across America. It is an event that both staff and students look forward to every year. We decorate every door on campus to spotlight authors and always have an amazing group of community members who come read their favorite books in each of our classes,” said the school's Principal, Quincy Brownfield. 

Having guest readers is a yearly tradition for ECS elementary schools. The guest readers serve as mentors, demonstrate the importance and value of reading to our students, and help inspire the next generation of readers. Plus, it allows guests the chance to connect with our community's youngest and most vulnerable members. It is a meaningful and memorable time of growth for both children and adults. 

Principal Rachel Brakeman of Grant Elementary says, “It is always a great opportunity to partner with our community to help support reading initiatives. We have had many fun events during the school day and Family Fun Nights that are centered around literacy.”

Brakeman adds that Grant is getting its students excited about Read Across America week by having a 'dress as your favorite book character day.'

“Our top priority and goal for Grant is centered around literacy. We want reading to be fun and something our students want to do,” said Brakeman. 

Alice Birney Elementary recently raised $1,610 in its first Read-A-Thon and is hosting a biliteracy night later this month. Washington Elementary is hosting a DEAR (Drop-Everything-And-Read) event. 

Eureka City Schools knows early literacy is pivotal in shaping a child's education and lifelong learning. That's why we are passionate about promoting reading and nurturing the development of crucial language acquisition, phonological awareness, and comprehension skills; we can positively impact our students' future academic success, their preparation for the workforce, and their ability to compete in a global economy.

Superintendent Storts has prioritized early literacy in his goals as the new superintendent and is committed to ensuring that students read at grade level by the end of third grade.

“The ability to read fluently, comprehend, and ask questions about what you read by the end of the third grade is a critical milestone marking the transition from learning to read to reading to learn - setting the stage for a lifetime of learning,” added Storts. 

This school year, ECS implemented a new literacy curriculum Amplify Core Knowledge Language Arts, which is a leading early literacy curriculum grounded in the Science of Reading. Amplify-CKLA equips students with rich knowledge that intentionally builds to inspire curiosity and drive results.

Assistant Superintendent of Educational Services Jennifer Johnson says, "I am incredibly proud of our teachers and support staff for the time and energy they have dedicated to implementing CKLA. The majority of our elementary teachers, lit techs, and aides attended Getting Reading Right training last year. Currently, ECS has a committed group of teachers attending LETRS training, Language Essentials for Teaching Reading and Spelling, this year and next. We are excited by the result from our mid-year assessment, which is showing solid growth in our primary grades in particular."

Eureka City Schools is excited about National Reading Month and aims to bring awareness to the community about the importance of literacy among our youth and encourage everyone to get involved. 

Storts says, “Reading with our youngest learners, whether at home with your child or as a volunteer at school, models the value of reading and nurtures a bond of shared discovery.” 

So we're calling on you to invest your time this month to promote the importance of reading and, if the opportunity arises, to read to a child.

To stay informed about ECS reading activities for National Reading Month, make sure to follow us on Facebook @eurekacityschools and Instagram #ReadtoSucceed

Press Contact:
Sierra Speer Dillon
Communications and Marketing Coordinator
Eureka City Schools
[email protected]