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Reading in D.C.
Durham, NC - Children in a northwest Washington, D.C. neighborhood have a new place to learn because of the work of local Duke alumni. At ceremonies Feb. 12, President Richard H. Brodhead dedicated the reading room created with Duke assistance at the Dorothy I. Height Community Academy Public Charter Schools.
Working through the Partnership in Education (PIE) program of the Duke Club of Washington, Hardy Vieux '93 and Loree Lipstein '03 began working with the school last year to develop the room. Richard A. Leggin '75 provided architectural services and James Walsh '74 offered his construction company's assistance. Various book drives gathered library materials and a grant from Lowe's helped with the furnishings.
PIE volunteers sorted books for shelving last summer, and the reading room opened to students in the fall. Brodhead's visit provided an occasion to dedicate the project officially. The room includes about 1,500 books.
"The Amos 1 Reading Room provides our learning community, particularly our students, a place where literacy is celebrated and set apart," said Kyle Williams, the Academy principal. "This space combines a unique sense of serenity and excitement that parallels the experience of reading a good book. Since our inception we have stressed the importance of reading and literacy. We have used incentives, awards, special recognition and events to encourage our students to make reading an active part of their lives. While we have had some positive results, nothing has generated more excitement and energy as the magic world created by the bright colors, beautiful mural, and that special spot on a beanbag found only in our very own Amos 1 Reading Room."
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