Setting an example
The city's participation in the reading buddies program started with the task force. It quickly grew from about 20 participants to 70, with the potential for more. Students responded the way organizers hoped by showing excitement about reading and wanting to get better.
“They've been reading more than one book every week, because they'll get through one but want to stay with their reading buddies,” said Rachelle Taylor, who coordinates the reading buddy program for the district.
It's just one example of the many efforts, large and small, that it will take to keep improving students' performance. The task force's aim is not only to find ways the city can help make it possible, but to encourage corporations and community groups around the city to think of ways they can help as well.
“We've got a long ways to go,” said Ryan, White's fellow city councilman. “Maybe as an example, the city can show what it can do and what needs to be done.”