FORT LAUDERDALE — If you haven’t seen the billboard at Northwest 27 Avenue and Sunrise Boulevard in Fort Lauderdale, look for it before it’s taken down Aug. 31.
The billboard, which features a boy and a girl reading, was created by the art students at Dillard High School and sponsored by readingpaysmore.com.
The billboard depicts the powerful image of teamwork, romance and the love of the reading among our girls and boys, said attorney Georgia Robinson, founder of readingpaysmore.com.
Robinson said residents should look out for other such images on billboards, bench ads and public art, put there to inspire children to develop a love of reading and to promote the financial and other benefits of reading. The mission of readingpaysmore.com is to create a culture of reading so that every child is reading and comprehending at or above grade level. readingpaysmore.com provides tips and strategies to help students read at or above grade level, regardless of their ec onomic or social status.
“We are asking everyone to read with a child and take her or him to a bookstore or local library today,” said Robinson. “We are also asking every school to have monthly and yearly reading contests. We will feature the winning boy and girl, each year, on our website.”
Robinson saw first-hand how the lack of basic reading skills could affect and alter someone’s way of life. Her father was illiterate and struggled to maintain the back office of his business. She spent many of her childhood days reading her father’s business letters, writing and responding to customers and contractors.
Now Robinson is encouraging those who are competent at reading to adopt children and help them read above grade level by September 2016.
Reading is the foundation of learning. Studies show that a child who is not reading at grade level by the third grade is four times more likely to drop-out of school because he/she lack the basic foundation skills to learn and comprehend concepts.
In Florida, students may advance through grades 1 and 2 based on each school district’s standards, but must meet the state’s reading assessment requirement before being promoted beyond the third grade. In essence, a student will be held back if he or she cannot read at grade level in the third grade.