The Cumberland County School District will receive $90,000 in grant funding for its Read to be Ready (RTBR) summer reading program.
Federal Programs Director Dan Schlafer said the funding will be used to help improve elementary student reading levels.
“It provides innovative and creative activities that engage our students in reading,” Schlafer said. “It also provides some books for them to take home and be part of their personal library. We’re really excited about this opportunity and we look forward to sharing it.”
Over $67,000 of the grant funding will go to 15 teachers who help students in the program. The remaining funds will go towards supplies and transportation costs.
Schlafer said the additional funds allow teachers in the program more time to work with their students.
“What we have now, because of this grant, is 20 additional days to work with children who are not on grade level, but to do this in a little different setting,” Schlafer said. “It’s almost like a summer camp, and it’s engaging, it’s creative, and it’s motivational.”
Schlafer said the program comes at no cost to the students and their families while the district provides unique learning opportunities.
“They get to experience some field trips and go to places like the Knoxville Zoo where they would not have normally been able to go during the summertime,” Schlafer said. “It’s a win for everyone. Our students are the main focus and increasing their love of reading is first and foremost. It’s a big deal for the kids and it’s a big deal for our county.”
Cumberland County Commissioners voted Monday to accept the grant funding. The program will take place this June at four of the district’s elementary schools, including Crab Orchard, Homestead, North Cumberland, and Pleasant Hill.