Rep. Ehlers brings libraries to forefront of discussion during literacy hearing

The House Education and Labor Subcommittee on Early Childhood, Elementary and Secondary Education held a hearing on Thursday, November 19, to examine ways to improve literacy skills in children and young adults.  During this hearing, long-time library champion Representative Vernon Ehlers (R-MI-3) took the lead and brought libraries to the forefront of discussion.

Mr. Ehlers stated that “he believed that libraries played an important role in literacy” and that he learned to read as a child by going to his local library when he could not attend school.  He went on to ask the panel of education and literacy experts testifying at the hearing how Congress could utilize libraries to advance the literacy skills of our nation’s young students.  Witness Dr. Dorothy Strickland, a professor at Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey, reiterated the ALA’s position that every school library should employ a state-certified school librarian.

“We thank Congressman Ehlers for appropriately inserting libraries into this discussion, as libraries and librarians are a vital resource for increasing the literacy skills of today’s youth,” ALA President Camila Alire said.

Jeff Kratz
Assistant Director, OGR

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