YOUNGSTOWN — A summer literacy expo is being prepared to encourage families and students to understand the importance of reading.
Experts say summer reading is essential for children to learn during their summer vacation.
Working together, Youngstown City School District, Premier Bank Community Event Series, The Youngstown Foundation Amphitheatre, JAC Management Group and My Brothers Keeper Youngstown are collaborating on the exhibit to encourage families and students to keep reading.
The free event is from 5-8 p.m. Thursday at the Youngstown Foundation Amphitheater. The expo is open to all and will feature educational and literacy resources, food, games, and various vendors and community organizations offering information about their programs and services.
Other highlights include special appearances from Judge Glenda Hatchett and children’s author Vicky Weber.
Hatchett is the star of the court show “The Verdict with Judge Hatchett” and the nationally Emmy-nominated former court show, “Judge Hatchett.” Hatchett will talk about keeping young people engaged over the summer. When temperatures rise, so does crime. Hatchett will address this topic and explain how when children develop a desire to read, it can take them to new places and keep them safe at home.
Weber is a musician and elementary educator. She is the author of many books, including “Mirabel’s Discovery” (Disney’s Encanto), “Maya and the Stage Fright”, “Taino Tales: The Legend of Coqui” and more. Weber will read an excerpt from his new book, which will be published this month. His Puerto Rican Taino heritage and musical training inspire his current titles.
“We are grateful to our generous sponsors for supporting this impactful event for Youngstown School District scholars and the community,” said Linda Hoey, family engagement manager for the school district. “All Youngstown City School K-12 students will receive a book as a way to encourage reading and resume their studies over the summer.”
Hoey said the literacy expo was organized by Parent Pathways, a YCSD initiative that advocates family involvement and open communication with schools. The English Learning Program, headed by Dennis Yommer, was another department that helped create the Summer Literary Expo.