Early Education and Third Grade Reading Levels

Priority Objective: Ensuring all children enter school cognitively, physically, socially and emotionally ready and ensuring all children read at grade-level by the third grade

Group Goals

  • Provide newborn males of color in the greater Austin area with age appropriate books (ages zero to five) to begin a private library.
  • Distribute and provide 3rd grade reading data to the public that is easily accessed.
  • Review educational requirements for successful teachers dealing with males of color

Early Childhood Groups Support Book Distributions

Book driveGreater Austin Area My Brother’s Keeper (GAAMBK)’ early childhood committee has partnered with BookSpring https://www.bookspring.org/gaambk and a number of other local education and early literacy organizations to address kindergarten readiness. This critical milestone includes social, emotional, and early literacy skills such as vocabulary, oral expression, and story comprehension. As reported by the E3 Alliance, low-income boys from African-American, Latino, and Native American backgrounds are statistically more likely to be behind on this milestone than other groups of children upon entering school. Often this gap persists through third grade, one of the key priorities for helping boys of color succeed through in GAAMBK’s strategic goals.

Action Items: Access to Books

In order to address this problem, the committee collected 5000 gently used books from the community last fall. We are now using our network to reach parents, caretakers or close relatives of a young boys of color age 5 years or younger. Through a coupon distributed through committee partners, these families to invite them to build up their home library, read aloud to their young boy every day, and help encourage his lifelong love of reading!

Longterm Impact of Books at Home

Bookdrive booksResearch shows that as few as 20 books in the home helps children have a better chance of success in school and in life (Evans, 2010). This effort will build home libraries to this critical mass, with a wide selection of new and gently used books for babies, toddlers, and young children to choose from, including bi-linugal English/Spanish. BookSpring will also provide tips for how to read aloud to a young child and encourage engagement through follow-up activities and discussion.

Please call Mariela Rodriguez, BookSpringGo Director, with questions (512) 472-1791 x 102. 

The Greater Austin Area My Brother’s Keeper books are being given out on behalf of:

  • Austin Independent School District Early Childhood
  • Bank of America
  • BookSpring
  • Catholic Diocese of Austin
  • Child, Inc
  • City of Austin
  • E3 Alliance
  • Communities in Schools
  • Literacy First
  • Little Book of Words
  • Seton
  • Texas Book Festival
  • Travis County
  • United Way of Greater Austin
  • University of Texas at Austin

Team Members

Committee members

  • Chair: Patrick Patterson (UT Austin)
  • Co-Chair: Albert Black (Child Inc.)
  • Edmund T. Gordon (UT Austin)
  • Drew Scheberle (Austin Chamber of Commerce)
  • Mike Perrin (UT Austin Athletics)
  • Gerardo Interiano (Google)
  • Nikki Salzillo (Bank of America)
  • Ashton Cumberbatch (Seton)
  • Bret Champion (LISD)
  • Alex Torrez (RRISD)
  • Steve Flores (PFISD)
  • German Ustariz (Entrepreneur)
  • Edmund Oropez (AISD)
  • Johnny Dorsey (Black Catholic Diocese)
  • Rachelle Everett (Bank of America)
  • Christine Growt (PFISD)
  • Jackie Porter (AISD)
  • Ron Hubbard (City of Austin)
  • Arthur Johnson (UT Athletics)
  • Emily Cicchini (Book Spring)
  • Mary Ellen Isaacs (A Community For Education)
  • Sylina Valdez (AISD)
  • Cynthia Ivey (Book Spring)

Data Analysis

MBK statistics