The Governor’s Books from Birth Foundation promotes early literacy efforts across the state of Tennessee by supporting and sustaining Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library in all 95 counties. In Summer 2018, GBBF worked with three school systems in Northeast Tennessee to promote expanded engagement around books by launching summer book buses. Elizabethton City Schools launched the Betsy Book Bus in Elizabethton in Summer 2018 and as part of this initiative. The purpose of the program is to improve literacy outcomes in Elizabethton. In year one, 520 students received a total of 2,300 books!
Without exposure to rich texts throughout the summer, many students fall behind academically. We want to level the playing field for these students and work as a state to meet the Read to Be Ready literacy goal of 75 percent of third grade students being proficient in reading by 2025.GBBF, through an Appalachian Regional Commission Grant, provided partial funding to launch these buses. ECS donated the bus and labor to outfit the interior, and local sponsors helped us reach our fundraising goal to outfit the bus. The total cost of the program for staff and materials to outfit the bus was nearly $20,000. The program began in June 2018 with Director Carla Whiles, Teacher Brandie Maness and Teacher Tammy Markland.
Information about routes and schedules for summer 2019 will be made available on this webpage!
Thank you sponsors!
A 2018 book drive took place in Elizabethton schools, which yielded more than 14,700 books. Thanks to everyone who donated to make this possible!