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Press Release

Monday, December 5, 2011

DOE Press Office
(850) 245-0413

Education Commissioner Announces 2011 Holiday Reading List

~ Families encouraged to enjoy the gift of literacy during the holiday season ~

TALLAHASSEE - Education Commissioner Gerard Robinson today announced the Just Read, Florida! 2011 Recommended Holiday Reading List. The list includes a wide variety of interesting books by grade level, each with a holiday theme that will kindle the interest, imagination and love of reading for people of all ages. Research suggests that students who read during school breaks and vacations maintain their academic progress made during the school year.

"Reading is a wonderful gift that families can share together," said Commissioner Robinson. "What better keepsake of a family's warmth and closeness than the gift of literacy that will last a lifetime."

Families can also use the online tool, "Find a Book" to supplement the holiday reading list with other books tailored to a child's interests. Tens of thousands of fiction and nonfiction books are available through "Find a Book" at http://florida.lexile.com. The Department launched the book search earlier this year as a means to match a child's reading ability with a book's text complexity using Lexile® measures. Lexile measures are the most widely adopted reading metrics used in the country, with more than 30 million Lexile measures reported annually from reading assessments and programs - representing more than half of U.S. students.

Florida First Lady Ann Scott also encourages students to read during the holiday and shares a video message that stresses the importance of literacy: http://youtu.be/Eki3i_-VlsQ

"The holidays are a wonderful time to enjoy family, friends and a great book," said Mrs. Scott. "I hope everyone will be able to take a few recommended reading selections and share them with their loved ones."

The Department of Education's Recommended Reading List is available on the Just Read, Florida! website at www.justreadfamilies.org. The site also offers parents the tools they need to nurture a reading-friendly environment at home, and in day-to-day activities. Resources include links to county and municipal public libraries and tips for parents on how to make the most of the time they spend reading with their families.

The Department of Education's Just Read, Florida! Office makes reading a priority in Florida's public schools and the community groups and volunteer organizations that support them. For more information about the Just Read, Florida! office, visit http://www.justreadflorida.com/.