The RIF Multicultural Literacy Campaign is a multiyear effort to promote and support early childhood literacy in African American, Hispanic, and American Indian communities.
There's no easy way to say it.
There's no way to dress it up.
There's no way to make it pleasant.
Children with poor reading skills face a bleak future—throughout their school years and into adulthood. A limited reading acumen means poor grades in the classroom, no or low-wage employment, and possibly a life of frustration.
This problem is most evident in several ethnic communities, where reading scores among African American, Hispanic, and American Indian/Alaska Native children lag behind those of White children. According to the National Center for Education Statistics (2009):
- 77% of White 4th grade students scored at or above the Basic Reading level.
- 48% of Hispanic 4th graders scored at or above the Basic Reading level.
- 52% of American Indian/Alaska Native 4th graders scored at or above the Basic Reading level.
- 47% of African American 4th graders scored at or above the Basic Reading level.
"These differences constitute a national emergency," says Carol H. Rasco, president and CEO of Reading Is Fundamental. "And our organization has already initiated a program that will not only help shrink this gap but keep RIF continually aware of the challenge."
RIF's Multicultural Literacy Campaign promotes early childhood literacy in African American, Hispanic, and American Indian/Alaska Native communities, and the campaign is determined to make a difference. Since its launch in 2007, this proactive initiative has continued to expand existing services, develop new resources, and partner with other organizations to help make reading a fun and beneficial part of everyday life.