South Orangetown Central School District

Elementary students had been taking note of the clues in their schools leading up to today’s big reveal of Charlotte’s Web, the book selected for the second annual K-5 Pick A Reading Partner (PARP) program. This morning, staff members and buildings were decked out to resemble characters and locations from E.B. White’s classic novel. At Cottage Lane Elementary School, chorus members welcomed arriving students with a song related to the book.

PARP, a New York State PTA initiative, aims to promote literacy and encourage a love of reading at home. SOCES PTA, in collaboration with William O. Schaefer Elementary School and CLE, introduced the community-wide program last year. The effort was so successful that SOCES PTA earned a NYS PTA regional award for their work.

SOCES PTA President Liz Dudley credits former president/current Treasurer Tiffany Morrison and PARP Coordinator Cindy Caraballo for the program’s success. “Tiffany had a vision to replace Reading is Fundamental (RIF) and Cindy and her team executed it perfectly!” she said. “Partnership with our schools yield the greatest rewards for our children.”

CLE Principal Karen Ramirez echoes the sentiment, noting that PTA purchased a copy of Charlotte’s Web for every SOCES family. “We are so thrilled to launch the PARP program today with the SOCES PTA. They did an amazing job and we are so thankful to Cindy Caraballo for coordinating all of today’s activities. PARP provides 100 percent access to the book for our families and it solidifies the home school connection.”

The power of PARP is that it engages schools and community partners to create excitement around reading that extends beyond the classroom. “We have fun trivia planned at school about Charlotte’s Web and the PARP Committee has organized great activities at the local libraries for the next month,” noted WOS Assistant Principal Maggie White. “We are happy to bring a true classic text in to the homes of all of our students!”

For more information, visit the PARP webpage.

Children and teacher holding up books in classroom