Premier launches reading challenge
Published Monday, 20 April, 2015 at 10:28 AM
Premier and Minister for the Arts
The Honourable Annastacia Palaszczuk
Minister for Education and Minister for Tourism, Major Events, Small Business and the Commonwealth Games
The Honourable Kate Jones
More than 100,000 Queensland students are set to read more than 1.5 million books as part of the 10th annual Premier’s Reading Challenge launched today.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk, joined by Education Minister Kate Jones at the official launch at Coorparoo State School, said this year the popular primary school program had been expanded to include high school students.
“For the first time since its launch in 2006, the Premier’s Reading Challenge has extended to Year 8 and 9 students, as well as children in kindergartens and long day care centres,” Ms Palaszczuk said.
“It’s so important for us to encourage our children to love reading, as the foundation for all other learning.
“My government is committed to improving the literacy and numeracy of our young Queenslanders. We passionately believe that investing in education is investing in our future.”
Education Minister Kate Jones said from 19 May to 28 August, students would be challenged to pick books from a recommended reading list, or make their own choices.
“Prep to Year 2 students aim to read or experience 20 books, Year 3 to 4 students 20 books, and Years 5 to 9 15 books, which reflects the larger and more challenging books read by this age bracket,” she said.
“Children in kindergartens and long day care centres can participate by sharing group reading experiences during a shorter period from 15 to 28 August.
“By encouraging students to enjoy books from an early age, we’re helping them start their education on the right foot.”
This year the Premier’s Reading Challenge is partnering with the State Library of Queensland’s Best Start program, to provide additional resources and programs at more than 320 public libraries throughout the state.
Coorparoo State School acting Principal John Kennedy said the school had participated in every Premier’s Reading Challenge since its launch in 2006.
“Feedback has been highly positive and that’s because it’s not a competition – it’s for the love of reading,” Mr Kennedy said.
“Sometimes we just thrust books in front of kids and say this is what you have to read, and I know from experience that the best reading happens when children are choosing it for themselves.
"The great thing about reading is that it’s the launch pad for everything we do in our lives. Without it, so many opportunities become limited or closed.”
The 2015 Premier’s Reading Challenge is supported by principal partner Teachers Union Health, program partner QSuper, supporting partners Storage King, QT Mutual Bank, the State Library of Queensland and Village Roadshow Theme Parks, and media partner The Courier-Mail.
To find out more about the Premier’s Reading Challenge, go to www.education.qld.gov.au/schools/readingchallenge/
Media contact: 0417 405 879