Letters to the Editor

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EDUCATION: Tacoma schoolkids support young military families

Letter by Jill Sells, M.D., Seattle on April 30, 2010 at 2:57 pm | 1 Comment »
April 30, 2010 4:15 pm

Re: “Schools can’t afford to alienate volunteers” (editorial, 4-30).

While sometimes volunteer efforts hit snags, Tacoma elementary students are learning the value of giving back. Thanks to the generosity and love of books of students such as those at Grant and Mann elementary schools, hundreds more children of military families will receive a brand-new book the next time they visit their doctor at Madigan Army Medical Center.

That’s because the students at those schools and several others in the area participate in Scholastic’s book donation program, ClassroomsCare, which encourages students to read to help support families who have sacrificed so much for our country. This spring, for every 50 books that a participating classroom reads, Scholastic donates beautiful, brand-new children’s books to Reach Out and Read, the school-readiness program that partners with doctors to prescribe books to their youngest patients and encourage families to read together.

Madigan is one of 35 U.S. military bases that provide the Reach Out and Read program to children ages 6 months through 5 years old, and will receive more than 3,000 books this summer through the ClassroomsCare program. Reading aloud to children can help them to cope with stress and anxiety, so this gift is especially significant for military families.

On behalf of all the doctors, nurses, and service men and women and their families at Madigan Army Medical Center, I thank the students and teachers at Tacoma Public Schools for sharing their love of books and reading with other children.

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