Recognizing the critical role the community can play to support local students, an anonymous donor – through the Commit Partnership – generously purchased classroom literacy resources for over 230 K-2 literacy teachers at 17 Dallas ISD elementary schools in the South Oak Cliff (SOC), Molina, and ACE elementary schools reaching approximately 4,500 students.

Valued at over $200,000, the donation includes a classroom library of 150 books for every Kindergarten, 1st grade and 2nd grade classroom, an oral language-reading program, reading rugs, and teacher professional development.

On Saturday, December 12th, over 100 community volunteers came together to write holiday cards and gift-wrap these literacy presents so that teachers could walk into their classrooms on Monday, December 14th with this wonderful surprise waiting inside.

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Collage1At Mills Elementary and Holland Elementary, community volunteers from the Dallas Police Department, Promising Youth Alliance, Leadership ISD, and Dallas County Community College District accompanied Santa Claus personally in delivering these gifts to students and teachers.

Jolee Healey, Executive Director of the ACE campuses, is excited about the positive impact this gift will have on students: “We are so grateful for this donation to support literacy development in our schools. Studies have shown that access to printed materials, even more than poverty, is the most critical variable affecting reading acquisition. Up to 60% of families living in poverty lack books in their homes, a stark comparison to the average middle-class family with access to an abundance of books. Our schools strive to bridge the gaps, but classroom libraries are costly and may take years to acquire. That is why this donation is so important; we know that when children have access to a variety of high interest books within their classrooms, they actually spend more time reading and developing a love for reading.  We feel very lucky to know our students will find their classrooms filled with reading joy this holiday season and for months to come.”