ELGIN – Sycamore Trails Elementary School in Bartlett won the 2017 Summer Reading Challenge for producing the most devoted readers while Elgin’s Otter Creek Elementary School saw the greatest gain in participants. Sycamore Trails demonstrated the most improved participation last year, paving the way for this summer’s success.
“Congratulations to Sycamore Trails and Otter Creek elementary schools,” said U-46 Chief Executive Officer Tony Sanders. “We know this is a team effort and we’re proud of our staff for working with students throughout the summer, of our families for encouraging their children to read, and proud of the collaboration with our colleagues at public libraries across our District. We couldn’t celebrate these accomplishments without all of these groups working together to support our students.”
The U-46 Board of Education, Bartlett and Gail Borden public libraries will celebrate the winners of the 2017 Summer Reading Challenge at 7 p.m. tonight (Sept. 11) as part of the Board’s Accent on Achievement recognition program. In addition to receiving certificates and trophies, the two winning schools will be treated to a special prize. For the past several years, they have chosen a visit from the Jesse White Tumblers.
The District and the four public libraries in Bartlett, Carol Stream, Elgin and Streamwood, lead the challenge each year to inspire reading during summer vacation and avoid the dreaded “Summer Slide” when students can lose up to two months in academic gains made during the school year.
The District’s 40 elementary schools and two early learning centers, Illinois Park in Elgin and Independence in Bartlett, participated in the 2017 Summer Reading Challenge for K-6 with 3,072 students completing the program across the four public libraries that serve the District. During the three months of summer reading more than 140,000 youth books and movies were borrowed throughout the Gail Borden Public Library District.
“Libraries, at their root, are based on collaboration and service,” said Jennifer Bueche, Director of KidSpace at the Gail Borden Public Library. “It is gratifying for libraries to work with each other and the District to serve young people in the community. Helping kids find joy in reading is one of the best parts of our Summer Reading Challenge.”
More than 130 or nearly 25 percent of Sycamore Trails elementary students participated in the program this summer, an increase of nearly 17 percent since last year. Students read with teachers on Monday morning throughout the month of June and July.
“We are proud of all the summer reading challenge finishers and participants,” said Ruth Anne Mielke, Youth & Teen Services Manager at the Bartlett Public Library. “The enthusiasm and support the students received from their principal and staff is truly incredible and we hope they will continue reading through the school year.”
Otter Creek Elementary School saw the most improved participation in the challenge with a 50 percent increase since last year. Eighteen percent of the increase resulted from students who participated in the summer reading camp at the Gail Borden Rakow Branch.