Local school system receives $1.2 million grant to strengthen literacy efforts

Georgia News

The Richmond County School System awarded a $1.2 million grant to go towards reading efforts for your children. RCSS is one of 38 districts in Georgia to receive the money.


CLICK HERE to register for the Augusta-Richmond County Public Library Summer Reading Program.


Sarah Cruz is the Language Arts Curriculum Coordinator for the district and was one of the grant writers. She explains some of the ways they plan to use the grant money.

We’re going to increase access to resources with classroom libraries,” says Crux. “We’re also going to increase teacher preparation with literacy coaches. We’re looking to partner with Augusta University to provide some of that expertise.”

After talking with Cruz, our NewsChannel 6 crew went down the street to the Book Tavern in downtown Augusta. Wednesdays are story time days at the local bookstore. Parents bring their children to hear a story, sing songs, color and interact with other children.

Augusta Parent Cassie Pickett says she tries to bring her 3-year-old as often as they can make it. She describes the inspiration she hopes to instill in her daughter.

“The willingness to engage with books, with reading, with other kids,” Pickett says. “She would never sit there and listen to somebody read a book, but when she sees other kids doing it, she’s like ok! This is what we’re doing!”

Cruz says the Richmond County School System will use a portion of the new grant money to work with little tykes getting them ready for Kindergarten.

“We will have some read with me classes in our media centers in our elementary schools,” Cruz says. Parents can bring their toddlers and participate in the building blocks of literacy. She says even as babies, singing songs, learning their sounds, and hearing lots of words will help them be talented readers and writers in the future.  

Augusta Parent Laura Stone says her 6-year-old was anxious to come back to story time at the Book Tavern. She says they used to go often before her daughter started attending school. Her little girl specifically asked to go back now that it is summertime. Stone says she knows attending these kinds of events helped prepare her daughter for her first year of school. 


“Oh yes, for sure! It definitely got her excited about reading,” Stone says. She encourages those of you struggling to help your kids read to hang in there! “It does take a lot of patience,” she says, “but they will get there and just persevere, they will get there and they’ll be reading soon!”

Augusta- Richmond County Public Libraries have a summer reading program with some pretty cool prizes for children and adults. CLICK HERE to register.

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