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Press Release

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

DOE Press Office
(850) 245-0413

Celebrate Literacy Week, Florida! Brings together State and Local Volunteers to Read to Students

~ More than 1,500 volunteers slated to read to students and promote the importance of literacy in their lives ~

TALLAHASSEE – In continuation of Celebrate Literacy Week, Florida!, representatives from state and local law enforcement agencies, the Florida Department of Health (DOH) and the Florida Department of Education (DOE) will read to children in classrooms throughout the state. The effort encourages students to read while fostering partnerships between state and local agencies, community organizations and schools.

“Celebrate Literacy Week, Florida! demonstrates how reading impacts us each and every day, and provides us with an excellent opportunity to recognize just how important this critical skill is in our lives,” said Florida Education Commissioner Dr. Eric J. Smith. “I’m so thankful to our law enforcement and agency partners for finding the time to engage in such a rewarding activity, and although this week will have to come to a close, I hope the celebration of literacy will personally continue for each of us year round.”

More than 80 law enforcement officers from sheriff’s offices throughout Florida will read “I Want to be a Police Officer,” by author Dan Liebman to approximately 240 classrooms in 20 school districts. In addition, thousands of students will hear the book, “Our Super Garden” by Anne Nagro from district school food service and nutrition staff and employees with the DOH “Read for Health” initiative. Local school districts and community partners were also encouraged to create fun and exciting literacy events that reinforce the importance of reading.

Celebrate Literacy Week, Florida! is a weeklong celebration from Jan. 24 – 28, 2011 aimed at raising awareness of the programs and projects offered by the DOE’s Just Read, Florida! office and its partner agencies and organizations. The Department of Education actively works with community groups and volunteer organizations throughout the state to make reading a priority in students’ lives. For more information about the Just Read, Florida! office, visit www.justreadflorida.com.

For more information about other Celebrate Literacy Week, Florida! events, visit www.justreadflorida.com/literacyweek.asp.