"Speak Out" is an expression of opinion from the Editorial Board of WBTV, and is presented by General Manager, Scott Dempsey.
Here are some frightening new statistics on childhood literacy…
Sixty percent of third graders in Mecklenburg County are NOT reading at grade level.
A recent study* found that one in six children who are not reading proficiently in third grade do not graduate from high school on time.
That’s four times greater than the dropout rate for proficient readers.
Another study** found high school dropouts are 63 times more likely to be incarcerated.
Sound reading skills are fundamental to success later in life.
You can help children in the Charlotte area rise above these staggering statistics.
The #CarolinaStrong Book Drive honors Cynthia Graham Hurd, one of the Mother Emanuel Nine killed in the Charleston Church shooting last June.
It will distribute books through the Reading Partners’ network of tutors.
They work with students in local schools to improve literacy and reading levels.
The books will help the students build a love for reading by having their own at-home libraries.
Please donate new or gently-used children’s books for students in kindergarten through fifth grade at the following locations through the month of June:
Grier Academy, Oakdale Elementary, Stoney Creek Elementary, Sugar Creek Charter School, or here at WBTV.
Share a good book, and a love for reading. Donate today!
Tell us what YOU think. SpeakOut@wbtv.com.
*SOURCE: Annie E. Casey Foundation, 2012