Generosity is spreading throughout Arlington ISD as we celebrate receiving grants from various organizations to help further our students’ education. Today we highlight two — the Rotary Club of Arlington & the Dollar General Literacy Foundation.
The Rotary at Webb
Since COVID-19 caused many schools, businesses and libraries to close, many students had trouble securing access to books to read.
“We were seeing the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on Arlington ISD and realized that the students had limited access to the Webb library,” said Rotary Club member Tom Ware. “We believed that a greater library of eBooks would help the students continue reading at home. After this was confirmed by Julie Moore, Arlington ISD Coordinator of Library Services, we worked together to develop the grant. Our club is very proud of the results.”
Since securing the grant, Webb’s librarian Karen Patterson has been able to add over 2,000 new titles to the eBook library collection. Students couldn’t be happier. The titles are made easy to read and access by SORA, a reading app for students.
“Our primary goal is to get students excited about reading and get books into kids’ hands/devices so-to-speak,” said Patterson. “Being able to offer virtual options during the time our schools are closed (weekends, pandemic issues, summer, holidays, etc.) is especially helpful when kids aren’t physically able to come to the library to check out print books.”
Having eBooks available to students 24/7 is a fantastic way to keep them reading. In the past 30 days, students have checked out 545 books! All possible by our wonderful partnership with the Rotary Club of Arlington.
“I love our Rotary, and they love our kids,” said Patterson.
Dollar General Literacy Foundation
The Dollar General Literacy Foundation, established in 1993, has awarded more than $200 million in grants to nonprofits, libraries and schools in 46 of the 50 states Dollar General services.
In September 2021, Lesley Cano, Arlington ISD’s Library Services Department Specialist was awarded $4,000 from the Foundation to purchase 1,000 books for the Arlington Raises Literacy Outcomes (ARLO) Bookmobile project.
The ARLO Bookmobile focuses on providing relevant reading materials to students who struggle with literature and subsequently have low reading scores.
The new books purchased and added to the bookmobile will provide a range of diversity, inclusion and a variety of languages other than English that reflects Arlington ISD’s demographic.
Each weekend for two hours at two rotating sites, students in grades pre-K-12 can select and check out books they deem enjoyable. During the two hours at each site, librarians will read stories and provide literacy activities for students.
“Getting books into homes that students choose themselves is key to building literacy in Arlington ISD and in supporting the district’s literacy focus,” said Cano. “Librarians are always looking for innovative ways to encourage literacy and reading with our students. The response from students has been phenomenal.” To find out more about the ARLO Bookmobile and pop-up dates, follow our Library Media Services page on Twitter here.
Additional grants Arlington ISD were ecstatic to receive are displayed below.
Arlington ISD is grateful to the following generous donors who support literacy for our students: