Anwar Mawri

Dearborn, MI

Organizations that have been dedicated to improving the quality of early childhood education for many years are struggling to find the necessary funding for their programs. Learning communities are sustained by a close collaboration of parents, teachers, and students who believe that all children are competent learners, capable of engaging fully with ideas and the world around them through the continuing evolution and enrichment of early childhood learning centers, they acknowledge the role of the environment in children’s development. The children and families that are serviced by the community come from predominately disadvantaged households. 75% – 95% of these families qualify for childcare assistance through the state as they are at or below the federal poverty line. The majority of the children are African American and Arab refugees. Half of the children and families speak little to no English. Additionally, 65% of the children live in a single parent household. With the changing demographics of the community, it is becoming a challenge to assess children and maintain developments by the end of the school year. There is an increase of children who are struggling to read. It is a priority to boost the children’s literacy levels. Although students are receiving reading and literacy times while they are in school, it is necessary they receive this support in their homes as well. When parents read to their children, it provides exposure to language, strengthens school readiness, and lays a strong foundation for future educational success according to Krashen (2004). Statistics report that 61% of low-income families don’t have any books in their homes. “Although children from low income families face the highest risk of literacy problems, only 23% are read to” (Krashen, 2004, p. 56). This grant proposal will aim to fix the low literacy levels in the community.