Arte, Social, Política e Vida em todo o seu cortejo, para todos, em qualquer lugar, seja qual for a língua,
Arts, Social, Policy and Life concerns, to everybody, everywhere, in any language
terça-feira, 4 de maio de 2010
A NEW FUTURE FOR LITERACY PROVIDING
This week we have three things to think about and celebrate – The monthly newsletter, literacy awards and hopeful news from the IRARI meeting earlier this week.
A. The World Wide Newsletter – Thank you, Roger Hayward
Two years ago Roger Hayward offered to edit and publish a monthly newsletter for the RI Literacy Resource Group. He did so even though he had other important responsibilities, most notably that of the RILRG Area Coordinator for North America. The result has been one of our most valuable tools – the monthly RILRG World Wide Newsletter. A few days ago the final monthly issue was mailed to all of you and through you to your districts and then, hopefully, down to their clubs. I know I speak for all of us in thanking Roger for this unselfish service and congratulating him for a great publishing success.
B. The Literacy Awards – Mac Leask and others see tangible evidence that clubs are listening and responding
The primary purpose of the RILRG’s literacy awards program is to encourage clubs to engage in a MENU of literacy projects. Five years ago we were happy if a club did just one project. Now the bar has been raised to five or more. The past five years have proven that there are far more than five literacy project opportunities in virtually all communities. The past five years have proven that under the right circumstances it is possible for every club in a Rotary district to complete five or more projects.
A number of this year’s zone coordinators had a significant number of clubs earn the District Literacy Award. If that occurred in one or more of your districts, take time to celebrate. It couldn’t have happened without communications from you to your districts. But also take time to feel grateful to the district leadership which passed the information on to the clubs. And take time to feel grateful for the club leadership which responded to the literacy award opportunity. Award applications won’t be made if district leaders do not share the information with the clubs or if clubs aren’t motivated to apply.
One success story in this regard showed up in an e-mail I just received from Mac Leask, literacy coordinator for Zone 32 (New England and adjacent parts of Canada). During this past year Mac did a terrific job of communicating with his districts. But, like most of you, he only received a modest amount of feedback from the districts during the year. And, like most of you, he was quite disappointed.
Well, the literacy awards program should make Mac feel a little better. Mac received applications for 39 ZONE LITERACY AWARDS (Mac doesn’t have a count of district awards yet). I don’t have the records on file but I believe that 39 zone awards is 7 to 9 times more than last year. Congratulations, Mac. And congratulations to all the rest of you who are seeing significant progress in the number of literacy awards earned this year.
C. Hopeful news from the IRARI meeting and the RAG Committee
Most of you know that Rotary International has a formal partnership with the International Reading Association. Most of you probably also know that it was the RI-IRA partnership which produced the Every School a Star guide which has been one of the important tools offered to clubs by the RILRG. Finally, most of you know that in 2007 a special interest group was formed within the IRA to promote the partnership between the IRA and RI. That special interest group was named IRARI and was led by Australian Rotarian Nea Stewart-Dore (firstname.lastname@example.org ).
Earlier this week IRARI held its annual meeting at the annual IRA conference in Chicago. IRARI officers also met with staff from RI and the IRA to discuss future plans in the context of the sun-setting of the RI Literacy Resource Group. Those meetings produced some hope that the partnership between RI and the IRA might become one of the vehicles by means of which some of the useful tools developed by the RILRG will continue to be made available. One of those tools is the literacy awards program. Another is periodic revisions of Every School a Star. A third is the promotion of International Literacy Day as a joint project of the local Rotary club and the local reading teacher association/ IRA members.
There is also some potentially good news on the RAG (Rotary Action Group) front. It is my understanding that the committee on RAGs has recommended a Literacy RAG for approval by the RI board of directors when the board meets in June. The proposal in question involves a RAG which would assume many or all of the functions of the current RI Literacy Resource Group. As I understand the situation, one of the requirements for approval of this RAG proposal is that all of the members of the RILRG be invited to join as active, voting members).
The implications are interesting. Let’s talk about them over the next couple of weeks.
In the meantime, if you have suggestions regarding how IRARI might serve as a world-wide champion of Rotary literacy projects, send me your suggestions and I will share them with the rest of the team – en route to preparing a set of recommendations.
RI World Literacy Coordinator
PHOTOS: International Literacy Day (IRARI); Roger Howard; Project Read Across America, in Benton County, Tenessee (pictured is Jenny Miles, Brianwood School Librarian, dressed as The Cat in the Hat); adult learner reading with a family during a home visit at Xosheyoskhe, near Bulwer, South Africa (photo by Lynn Stefano); Project Australia Fun Day; Rotary Ecuador Project with IRA of Idaho; Ecuador Project, students perform as thank you to the books; project Reading Across Continents, Loyola Jesuit School (Abuja, Nigeria) participating in the project (photo by Divine Kemayou); International Reading Association Project.