Tulane Day Of Service Includes Expanding Early Learning Focus’ LETS Read Literacy Bag Program

Early Learning Focus’ program director Lisa Schlakman in the midst of the Tulane students in front of Plessy.

NEW ORLEANS – As part of their fall Day of Service, a group of Tulane University freshmen spent last Saturday, Sept. 9, assisting Early Learning Focus to support the expansion of its LETS Read Literacy Bag Program, which is based at the Homer A. Plessy Community School, 721 St. Philip St., in the French Quarter. 

         The program utilizes a library of literacy learning materials for New Orleans children in pre-K through first grade and includes professional development for teachers and workshops for families. 

         The contents of the bags act as, or supplement, traditional homework and provide not only practice in important literacy skills and concepts for young students, but also guide parents in helping their children learn at home and thrive in school. 

         The program operates at Plessy and two partner childcare centers:  Wilcox Academy of Early Learning and Open Minds, Open Hearts. It is being expanded to include Spanish-language books and to be used in after-school programming and other community-based educational programs, reps said.

         Early Learning Focus believes that high-quality early childhood development and education provides the critical foundation for school success, and brings developmentally-appropriate training and materials to educators and families of young children in New Orleans. Reps said the group’s emphasis is on early social-emotional learning and literacy.  Because education is a key pathway out of poverty, reps said they work to create and nurture a seamless system of care and learning for underserved children through community partnerships, programs and family engagement.

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