back to top

Roanoke Celebrates All-America City Win

Roanoke City Schools Superintendent Dr. Rita Bishop reads a book to the children during Friday’s kickoff ceremony.

Some of Roanoke’s youngest citizens — kindergarten students from Roanoke City Public Schools and children from local childcare centers — gathered last Friday on Mill Mountain for a kickoff ceremony to celebrate Roanoke’s recent recognition as an All-America City.

 In July, the city was selected by the National League of Cities as a winner for its “Star City Reads” campaign, a plan to ensure that more Roanoke children are reading at grade level by the end of third grade. Additional celebrations to involve the community will take place in the months ahead.

During Friday’s celebration at the Roanoke Star, where Mayor David Bowers, Roanoke City Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Rita Bishop, and City Manager Chris Morrill spoke to the children about the award and the importance of learning to read. Afterward, refreshments provided by Roanoke City Public Schools were served under the Mill Mountain Picnic Shelter, and the children were given goodie bags containing books and other surprises.

Roanoke’s “Star City Reads” plan makes the city a charter member in the Campaign for Grade-Level Reading Community Network – a national movement of local leaders, nonprofits and foundations putting a stake in the ground on third-grade reading. As a charter member, Roanoke will have access to a Promising Practices Clearinghouse, an online help desk, peer-learning opportunities, meetings with national experts and policymakers, and a foundation registry designed to expand and replicate successful programs.

Partners in the plan include the City of Roanoke, Roanoke City Public Schools, United Way of Roanoke Valley, Smart Beginnings of Greater Roanoke, Total Action against Poverty, Roanoke Public Libraries, Blue Ridge Literacy, and Dr. Craig Ramey and Dr. Sharon Ramey from the Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute—for their contribution to the development of the campaign.

This marks the sixth time Roanoke has earned the distinction as an All-America City – a feat achieved by no other city in the United States. Other years the city has won include 1952, 1979, 1982, 1988, and 1996. This year, Roanoke was one of 32 finalists selected through a peer review process from a field of more than 100 entries across the country selected. In all, the National League of Cities named 14 communities All-America Cities.

For more information about the “Star City Reads” campaign, contact Sheila Umberger, Director of Roanoke Public Libraries, at 853-2476 or [email protected]. For information about the All-America City Awards, contact Mike McGrath at 303-571-4343, [email protected].

Latest Articles

- Advertisement -Fox Radio CBS Sports Radio Advertisement

Latest Articles

- Advertisement -Fox Radio CBS Sports Radio Advertisement

Related Articles