Over the last twelve years, Michigan reading proficiency has declined, making us the 41st state in the nation. We are facing a literacy crisis! Recent efforts from various stakeholders have provided all districts in the state of Michigan to build momentum, including Kalamazoo County.
Critical research illustrates the importance of literacy interactions in a child’s home. Kalamazoo County is identified as a book desert meaning that only 21-30% of homes contain 100 or more books. In order to address this shortage, we created the KRESA Book Garden to get books into the hands and homes of children. This is just one of many ways that the KRESA Instructional Center is promoting literacy in Kalamazoo County.
The goal of the KRESA Book Garden is to replenish the book desert in Kalamazoo County. Our plan is to place book gardens throughout Kalamazoo County based on the percent in which students in a given area are considered at-risk. The KRESA Book Garden is simply a way to get books into the hands of youth.