Love of Reading boosts Diefenbaker

John Diefenbaker Public School Grade 5 students Riley Wasylyshyn-Romanchuk (left) and Zimo Li (right) hold up the cheque that officials from the Indigo Love of Reading Foundation presented last week. The school will receive $65,000 in funding for a number of projects, including expanding and updating the books available in the school library. -- Jason Kerr/Daily Herald

Students and teachers at John Diefenbaker Public School are getting ready to celebrate their love of books in a big way.

On May 25, the school was selected as one of 30 elementary schools from across the country to receive funding from the Indigo Love of Reading Foundation.

In total, Diefenbaker School will receive $65,000 in funding to be paid out over the next three years. The school’s vice-principal, Tammie Horan, called the news a “great gift” that will go a long way to helping students and teachers.

“We don’t get rid of books,” Horan said. “They’re tattered and torn (and) we just keep replacing and fixing them, so this will be an excellent way to get some new materials into our library.”

In addition to the $65,000 in grant money, the school will also receive a 30 per cent discount for the purchase of any new books at a Coles or Indigo Book Store.

The funds will help restock and update the school’s main library, as well as expand classroom libraries and provide more materials the school’s book club and in classroom guided reading programs.

The funding is especially important since Diefenbaker has so many students who speak English as a second language, which adds an additional challenge.

“We need to find books that are high interest, but low vocabulary, so we can foster that love of learning for them,” Horan explained. “We need books that are more mature reads, but are at easier levels so that those kids have things to read.”

For the rest of this story, please see the May 30 online or print edition of the Daily Herald.