I was caught off guard by a recent Twitter conversation started by Shannon Hale, author of the Newbery Honor book Princess Academy and many others.
The powers that be at this school decided that regardless of her qualifications as a presenter, Hale was for girls – and boys wouldn’t be interested.
The last time I was volunteering at a book giveaway, where we let each child in the school pick out a new, free book to take home, I had several middle school aged boys say to me “There’s nothing here I want.” Or “I don’t see anything I like.” It’s times like that I try not to deflate like a balloon.
Every year CLiF works with thousands of low-income, at-risk, and rural children from birth to age 12. And every year, without fail, our most challenging clients are the oldest boys.
We’re not alone. Nationwide boys read at a lower rate than girls, drop out of school at higher rates than girls, go to college at lower rates than girls, and earn college degrees at lower rates than girls.
Trying something new here in the CLiF office. We’re tuned in to literacy news from near and far, and there are great stories every day out there about reading, writing, and books. So in the spirit of sharing resources, every week (mostly) we’ll post a mini library of links to stories we like.