Gov. Malloy recognizes Middlebrook readers

Gov. Dannel Malloy kicked off the 18th annual Summer Reading Challenge Friday, May 9, at the State Library in Hartford, and recognized Middlebrook School as one of the top-performing Connecticut schools of last summer's reading challenge.

The Summer Reading Challenge, also known as "Connecticut Reads," is a statewide program, coordinated by the Connecticut Department of Education in conjunction with the Connecticut State Library, that encourages educators and students to participate in summer reading.

Schools compete based on student population and grade level, according to a press release from the governor's office, and the schools with the highest participation rates and highest number of books read per student are recognized.

With 100% participation and an average of five books read per student, Middlebrook read a total of 1,057 books last summer, according to the Connecticut Department of Education.

"We know that children who read at grade level by the time they reach third grade are much more likely to succeed academically," said Gov. Malloy.

"Reading is the most important skill for students to learn and one that requires constant practice. Students who maintain their reading habits over the summer are doing well to ensure their success."

Commissioner of Education Stefan Pryor attended the 2014 Summer Reading Challenge kick-off ceremony, during which he, the governor and State Librarian Kendall Wiggin stressed the importance of summer reading, according to the governor's press release.

Mr. Pryor said he is "proud to recognize all the teachers, principals and parents who help foster a love of reading in children."

"Creating a lifelong habit of reading opens the gateway to learning," said Mr. Pryor. "It is vital that we support and enhance efforts to help every student become a proficient and confident reader."

View the full list of 2013 Summer Reading Challenge winners here.