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Reading

Blue Ribbon Book Club a great benefit

West Virginians don’t always think about all the people and organizations quietly working behind the scene to make a difference to improve our lives. An announcement this week from the state Department of Education reminds us those folks are everywhere.

Because of a partnership with the Marshall University June Harless Center and The Dollywood Foundation, the department is able to again offer the West Virginia Blue Ribbon Book Club, through which public school students in grades 1 through 3 will receive books. By the end of July, 258,000 books will be distributed.

Further, teachers also will get books to help them develop lessons for the 2021-22 school year.

“This year, we were able to expand the program to include our third graders, which means more books in the hands of our youngest learners,” state Superintendent Clayton Burch said.

Celebrity readers are pitching in, too. Folks such as West Virginia University men’s basketball coach Bob Huggins and national champion Marshall men’s soccer coach Chris Grassie are part of the effort.

We know what a difference it can make for kids who learn to love reading early in life, and who have access to good books that make reading not just educational, but fun.

Kudos to those developing the partnerships that will make that difference for thousands of Mountain State kids. They and plenty of others don’t get enough credit for the work they do in their determination to help our state rise to its potential.

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