SOURCE: Scholastic Inc.

Scholastic Inc.

September 01, 2010 13:35 ET

Kids Read 52,710,368 Minutes to Set a New Scholastic World Record for Summer Reading

Winning Schools to Be Published in the 2011 Scholastic Book of World Records; 50,000 Books Donated to Reading Is Fundamental to Mark a Successful Summer of Reading

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - September 1, 2010) -  This summer, Scholastic (NASDAQ: SCHL), together with Reading Is Fundamental (RIF) and the National Summer Learning Association, successfully motivated kids around the globe to set a brand new Scholastic Read for the World Record of 52,710,368 minutes read over the summer, besting last year's record of 35,846,094 minutes read. Launched on April 30, the Scholastic Summer Challenge asked kids to log the minutes they spent reading during the summer break, and more than 110,850 kids from more than 5,500 schools throughout all 50 states in the U.S. and in 120 countries worldwide smashed the world record in summer reading. 

The 20 participating schools with the students who logged the most minutes will be published in the 2011 Scholastic Book of World Records, which will be available through Scholastic Book Fairs, Book Clubs and in book stores nationwide in November 2010. On behalf of all the readers participating in the Summer Challenge, Scholastic is making a donation of 50,000 books to kids in need through Reading Is Fundamental, a children's literacy non-profit.

The Scholastic Summer Challenge, a free program for kids and families, is based on the research that shows that kids who read four or more books over the summer months can avoid the "summer slide," or the loss of reading skills due simply to being out of school. According to Francie Alexander, Chief Academic Officer, Scholastic, "The readers who participated in the Scholastic Summer Challenge are more likely to go back to school ahead of the curve and ready to start the new school year." She added, "We applaud all the kids who read and logged their minutes and the teachers and parents who encouraged these kids to take the time to make reading an important part of their summer vacation."

Scholastic congratulates and thanks the 42 U.S. Gubernatorial Spouses who participated in the Scholastic Summer Challenge as "Reading Ambassadors," encouraging children in their states to read four or more books this summer. In support of their work, Scholastic donated 500 books to a school selected by each First Spouse, so that children had books to take home and read over summer vacation. The majority of the Reading Ambassadors also hosted summer reading events at local schools or libraries.

The Scholastic Summer Challenge included a robust online community for kids, plus expert advice on helping kids find books they will love, engaging activities for parents on Facebook and summer book lists for kids of all ages, as well as resources for librarians and educators. Kids ages eight and up discovered great books and logged their reading minutes, earning virtual rewards and contributing minutes logged toward their school's total. In addition to logging minutes to Read for the World Record, kids also played book-themed games, created and shared book wish lists, and chatted about books with other readers on the Summer Challenge message boards.

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