MOSS POINT, MS (WLOX) - The children at Kreole Elementary School in Moss Point are going to begin the summer vacation with a special gift, the gift of reading. It all kicked off Tuesday morning with an event designed to open young minds.
The newly formed Foundation for Academic Excellence raised money to buy and donate 1,000 books for the children. The large table full of books was the hit of the classroom, as the kids took time to look and touch and feel the special delivery.
Foundation leaders say while the books are pretty neat when you're six or seven years old, there's a deeper meaning to this donation.
"Students who have access to books at home, at home libraries, they consistently do better academically," explained Janelle Carter-Brevard, who heads up the foundation. "It cuts across all demographics, other types of advantages. Students who have books at home, it helps them to succeed."
Guest readers had the kids spellbound. They have a new found appreciation for reading.
"I like reading because it helps you go a long way in life. And when you read, it helps you get around and stuff," said Makailyn Coney.
So what do the children feel like when they pick up a book? Just ask student Makhyle Bradley.
"It makes me happy, because when I read it's, like, fun stuff in it and it makes me happy."
As I watched their faces, there's no doubt the children at Kreole Elementary in Moss Point were excited by Tuesday's book reading event. But, perhaps, the adults who read the books got even more excited. One of them was local attorney Amy St. Pe'.
"It was so exciting to see their faces light up as they told me about story because most of them have read 'Pete the Cat.' It was my first time reading it, so it was very exciting, very rewarding," St. Pe' said.
Another reader was State Representative Jeramey Anderson.
"We had a great time. We actually read three books. I think we were supposed to read one. But the first book I read to them, the second two books I let them read to me and they enjoyed it. I enjoyed it and I'm looking forward to doing this again," Anderson said.
Officials with the Foundation for Academic Excellence hope to make this an annual event at Kreole Elementary and other schools in the Moss Point School District.