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JPS Selects “Because Of Winn-Dixie” As Annual All-District Read

JAMESTOWN, N.Y. –  Approximately 2,000 Jamestown Public Schools elementary students and middle school students at Jefferson Middle School will bring home a copy of Because of Winn-Dixie by Kate DiCamillo, and begin reading it with their families and class on Monday, May 13.

For the third straight year, JPS will take part in a unique, national family literacy program called One District, One Book, made possible by non-profit Read to Them, designed to strengthen the educational connection between home and school. 

Staff and families from all five JPS elementary schools and the fifth grade team at Jefferson Middle School helped select Because Of Winn-Dixie, which tells the story of a young girl, Opal, who befriends a dog named Winn-Dixie. Each school nominated titles that were available in both English and Spanish and then all staff and families voted from that list of nominations. 

“Spending time reading with a child is one of the most valuable gifts parents and guardians can give.  Taking the time to relax and enjoy reading with your child sends the important message that reading is worthwhile.  It helps develop a love of reading that will last a lifetime and also help our children develop vocabulary, listening, language, thinking, and life skills.  Reading one book together unifies our schools and community and keeps us ‘on the same page’ in terms of our mission, vision, and core beliefs.  We aim to see every child learning every day, and we look forward to seeing the learning that will take place as we read Because of Winn-Dixie together!”

In school, students will experience dynamic assemblies, answer trivia questions, and engage in creative extension activities. The subject matter in Because of Winn-Dixie also creates an exciting opportunity to partner with the Chautauqua County Humane Society, which will be visiting classrooms to speak to students about the work they do for animals in the region. Elementary and middle school students across JPS will also be accepting donations for the society’s “Pennies for Paws” campaign.

“The opportunity for the Chautauqua County Humane Society to partner up once again with Jamestown Public Schools is very exciting,” said Brian Papalia, director of fundraising and communications. “The CCHS Humane Education Committee looks forward to educating children about the work we do for the community  as well as critical animal safety and care issues. We are so grateful for the JPS support of Pennies 4 Paws. The Chautauqua County Humane Society is not affiliated financially in any way with any other animal welfare organization and does not receive any city, county, state, or federal tax funding. The important programs and services of the Chautauqua County Humane Society are possible only through the generosity of caring people and organizations who support CCHS.”

A reading schedule will be provided to students ahead of May 13. Recordings by special guest readers will be made available on the Jamestown Public Schools Facebook page.