Haywood County Schools (HCS) is 1 of 212 grant recipients across the state to receive a 2017 Read to be Ready Grant. The grant funds educational camps that target rising first, second, and third graders. More than $8.5 million was awarded throughout Tennessee and more than 11,000 students will benefit from the Read to be Ready Grant. Haywood County’s grant total is $49,146.

Read to be Ready is a coordinated campaign and approach to increase third-grade reading proficiency in Tennessee to 75 percent by 2025 through a variety of initiatives. The Read to Be Ready Summer Grant Program is designed to support students even after the last day of school, and results from the first year indicated for nearly 600 students who participated, there were increases in their abilities to read fluently and decode words, increased phonemic awareness, and increased confidence and interest in reading.

In partnership with the Brownsville Boys and Girls Club, HCS will host a six-week Read to be Ready Camp entitled, A Community of Readers and Leaders. In addition to building and strengthening literacy skills, students will gain knowledge about the concept of ‘community’ with a focus on Haywood County. Each week, students will learn about something new in the community: What is Community, Nature in the Community, Arts in the Community, Safety and Government in the Community, Health in the Community, and My Role in Our Community. The goal of the camp will be accomplished by reading various types of books, participating in community and virtual field trips, and visits by guest readers from throughout the community. Students will ‘read, write, listen, and speak their way’ to a better understanding of where they live. The camp will end with a Summer Reading Expo for all camp participants and their families and friends. A Community of Readers and Leaders Summer Camp dates are June 5 – July 14, 2017; Mrs. Krista Parker will be the Camp Director. Mr. (Coach) Ray Jones is the Director of the Brownsville Boys and Girls Club.