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WBE receives Laura Bush Foundation for America’s Libraries $5,000 grant

Tuesday, May 18, West Bainbridge Elementary School was one of 205 schools from 43 states across the country to receive a $5,000 grant through the Laura Bush Foundation for America’s Libraries. Mrs. Laura Bush joined Kelly Clarkson on “The Kelly Clarkson Show” to announce that the Laura Bush Foundation for America’s Libraries awarded more than $1 million in library grants this year.

Inspired by the Laura Bush Foundation, H-E-B surprised 15 Texas-based Laura Bush Foundation for America’s Libraries grant recipients with an additional gift totaling $100,000. Scholastic Books also provided the 34 teachers and educators in the virtual audience with money to purchase books for their schools and students.

The grant recipients’ library collections are outdated, averaging approximately 20 years old. Many of the libraries will use the funds to update their collection, offer more dual language titles, and provide books focused on diversity and inclusivity.

“West Bainbridge Elementary is very thankful for the opportunity to acquire new books for our primary students for next year. This grant will help us with purchasing new books to support our students and their love for Reading.” Ortega Ross, Principal said.

There are many students who don’t have books at home, so having access to a library at school is essential,” Mrs. Bush said. “With the grants, school libraries across the nation can restock and update their collections providing opportunities for students for years to come.”

“Receiving the Laura Bush Foundation Grant is exciting news! I have no doubt that these funds will be used to select reading material that is interesting and engaging for our students. We have wonderful educators in our community and their efforts have been recognized and rewarded with the receiving of this award.” said Dr. April Aldridge, Assistant Superintendent of Teaching & Learning.

Mrs. Bush also revealed her 2021 summer reading list, which includes recommendations for young readers through middle schoolers. Selections highlight books focused on diversity, inclusion and kindness; and the list features a title by the late Beverly Cleary.

“The summer reading list is a great resource for parents and caregivers,” Mrs. Bush said. “As libraries open back up all over our country, I hope children will take the list to their local library and borrow each of the featured titles. It is so important that all kids keep reading over summer break.”
Grant applications for the 2021-2022 school year will open in late 2021. Visit www.bushcenter.org to learn more.

The Laura Bush Foundation for America’s Libraries supports school libraries with the greatest needs with the goal of encouraging all students to develop a love of reading and learning. Since its inception in 2002, it has awarded more than $16 million to more than 2,800 schools across the country.

The Laura Bush Foundation is managed as a restricted fund at the George W. Bush Presidential Center in Dallas, Texas. More information can be found at www.bushcenter.org.