Mobilizing Literacy launch is victory for Kansas kids

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. | Contributed photo

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.”

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Emporia State University 1200 Commercial St Emporia, KS - 66801

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