The celebration message was loud and clear as Emporia State University staff invited school administrators and supporters to join them in a recent bell ringing to mark the launch of the institution’s Mobilizing Literacy program.
Established by the University’s Teachers College with a $2
million trust from the Walter and Evan Jones fund, Mobilizing Literacy
strives to prepare preschool through third-grade students for success.
Founded in the 1950s to help with children’s
medical expenses in Coffey, Lyon and Osage counties, Emporia State's program has expanded to support school readiness, summer learning and
attendance in 11 school districts across Kansas, focusing on children from
birth through age 8.
Emporia State president
Allison Garrett expressed pride in the partnership to support early intervention literacy
programs, while Steve Ternes, acting executive director of Mobilizing Literacy
in Kansas, reported that every public school in the jurisdiction submitted
applications for program funding.
With seven schools classified
under school readiness and two comprising summer learning, recipients include
elementary schools in Burlingame, Lyndon, Melvern, Lyon County, Emporia, Coffey
County and Burlington.
“Mobilizing Literacy is truly a grassroots program with a clear, important, and arduous goal, having all third graders reading at grade level,” Ken Weaver, dean of The Teachers College, said. “The belief that the Jones Trust has demonstrated by funding this project and the collective efforts of school districts, community leaders, consultants, evaluators and Emporia State University are essential to changing lives for the common good.”