Skip to Content
Latest News

Education Commissioner Diaz Joins Students During Celebrate Literacy Week, Florida!

January 27, 2023

FDOE Press Office

Education Commissioner Diaz Joins Students During Celebrate Literacy Week, Florida!

~ Annual celebration inspires students and families to make reading part of their daily routines ~

Miami, Fla., January 27, 2023 – Today, Florida Commissioner of Education Manny Diaz, Jr. visited with students at Hialeah Gardens Elementary School in Miami-Dade County to conclude Celebrate Literacy Week, Florida! The 15th annual weeklong event is designed to raise awareness about the importance of reading and to inspire students and families to make reading part of their daily routines. Under Governor Ron DeSantis, Florida has championed literacy achievement and made record investments in innovative support programs, including more than $202 million for the current school year (an increase of $40 million) secured through the Governor’s 2022-23 Freedom First Budget.

This year, in partnership with the Florida Education Foundation and event sponsors Simply Healthcare and PNC Bank, the Florida Department of Education and school districts are celebrating literacy through the theme, “Take a Deep Dive Into Literacy, Splash Into New Worlds!” Commissioner Diaz brought this theme to life as he read The Shark Book by Pamela Chanko to Hialeah Gardens Elementary School first graders.

“A strong foundation in reading can dramatically and positively alter the trajectory of a child’s life,” said Education Commissioner Manny Diaz, Jr. “It was great to celebrate literacy with some very bright students and educators who share our passion for reading. Thank you for the hard work and dedication of Department staff who made this week a success!”

“Reading is a core value in Florida,” said Cari Miller, Vice Chancellor for Literacy Achievement at the Florida Department of Education. “A number of Celebrate Literacy Week! events have taken place across Florida this week. These events brought renewed focus to the importance of reading while encouraging and inspiring students to read every day to discover new worlds.”

“Literacy week is sweeping across the state and the Florida Education Foundation is a proud supporter of this annual effort,” said Rebecca Matthews, board chairman of the Florida Education Foundation. “Having spent time reading with first graders this week, I witnessed enthusiastic students who were ready to learn, and their excitement was contagious when given a shark book to take home. Celebrate Literacy Week is a truly inspirational and fulfilling time with young Floridians.”

Early literary skills during formative years are essential for students to succeed both academically and in life. Research shows nearly 90% of students who failed to earn a high school diploma were struggling readers in third grade. Accordingly, Governor DeSantis has prioritized literacy achievement and continuously invested in early readers, including signing the New Worlds Reading Initiative into law in June 2021, to create Florida’s first statewide book distribution program.

Read More News...