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Home > Leadership > Mayor > Archived Press Releases > 2012 Archives > May 2012 > Mayor Brown Launches 11th Annual Reading Rules!Kids Summer Reading Challeng

Mayor Brown Launches 11th Annual Reading Rules!Kids Summer Reading Challenge

Contact: Lorey Schultz
              (716) 851-5545

“Reading Rules!” Program Continues to be a Big Hit with Area Youth

Mayor Byron W. Brown, along with Buffalo School Superintendent Amber Dixon, today launched his 11th Annual Kids Summer Reading Challenge, a highly successful program designed to help students entering grades K-12 maintain and improve the reading and writing skills that they learned during the previous school year.

“It is important that children continue to work on their reading and writing over the summer, so that they do not lose the skills that they learned during the school year,” said Mayor Brown. “The Reading Rules! Kids Summer Reading Challenge is the perfect way to do this while, at the same time, giving your child a fun and rewarding activity to participate in.” 

“Reading Rules” began in 2001 when Mayor Brown served in the New York State Senate as a way to address the literacy problem in New York State, in particular in the City of Buffalo and Western New York. Mayor Brown started the literacy effort to encourage school children to read books throughout the summer, and submit written summaries of each book they had read.

The idea behind the Summer Reading Challenge is simple: participating children entering grades K-8 must read 7 books from a provided list over the course of the summer, write a brief summary of 8-10 sentences on each and then return the summaries to Mayor Brown in exchange for an invitation to a prize ceremony in the early fall where they will receive a certificate of achievement and many great prizes donated by the program’s sponsors. High School students entering grades 9-12 must read at least 4 books to qualify.  At the ceremony, there will also be hundreds of other prizes raffled off, such as computers, bicycles and school supplies.

“As Superintendent of the Buffalo Public Schools, I want to express my enthusiasm and my gratitude to the Mayor for his efforts to create reading opportunities for our youngsters through the Mayor's Summer Reading Program,” said School Superintendent Dixon.  “Research tells us that the more students read the better readers they become.  It is extremely important for our students to see that the entire community is involved in improving their reading achievement.  The experts agree that literacy, which includes reading and writing, is the cornerstone for success in school. Therefore, the Mayor is on the right track by encouraging students, through his efforts, to become stronger readers and writers so that they can be successful in school and in life.”

In 2011 a record number of readers, over 1,400, completed the Challenge of reading at least 7 books, (9,800 total) and then submitted narrative summaries on each book.   

Mayor Brown stated, “I am very pleased with the level of student and parent participation in this important program, which has grown every year, but this year we are going to put even greater emphasis on the amount of students completing the challenge.” 
Successful completion of the program entitles each participant to receive a prize pack that includes: A Certificate of Achievement from Mayor Brown, a Mayor’s Summer Reading souvenir t-shirt,  free admission passes to Darien Lake, Fantasy Island, The Buffalo Zoo, The Buffalo Museum of Science, the Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens, The Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural Site, the Albright Knox Art Gallery, The Buffalo and Erie County Historical Society, and books, discount coupons, a box of General Mills cereal and much more.
In addition, a variety of special prizes will be raffled off at the program’s fall awards ceremony, including: Lap top and desktop computers, bicycles, Sony Playstations, I-Pods, High Definition Televisions, Games, Toys, Educational Incentive packages,  loaded book bags, gift certificates, and much more.

This year’s financial sponsors are: Buffalo Water, AT&T, M&T Bank, Dollar General, Wendy’s, Wal-Mart, National Fuel, Buffalo Metropolitan Federal Credit Union, General Mills, Buffalo Teacher’s Federation, Delaware North Companies Ad Pro Sports, Alternative Information Systems, Darien Lake Theme Park, Martin’s Fantasy Island, UPS and Rosen Publishing.  Collaborative partners include: Buffalo Public Schools, Project Flight, Buffalo Read to Succeed, Buffalo & Erie County Libraries and The Buffalo Police Athletic League.

For more information, please call the Mayor’s Division for Youth at (716) 851-READ (7323). You may also log on to www.city-buffalo.com .