WLEC pushes for Senate Bill 340 allowing free books to children

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Published: Jan. 27, 2023 at 8:46 AM CST
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WARRICK CO., Ind. (WFIE) - Warrick Literacy and Educational Connections officials say early discussions that led to the writing of Senate Bill 340 have now become a reality.

Senate Bill 340 establishes a state-wide Imagination Library, and would allow children between the ages of 0 to five years old to receive free books.

According to a press release, the bill proposes matching funds to Dolly Parton Imagination Libraries throughout the state of Indiana. WLEC funds Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library in Warrick County.

Darlene Short director of Warrick Literacy says introducing children to book at young ages is crucial to get them ready for kindergarten.

“Children are more successful if they can come to kindergarten with a 6,000 word vocabulary, and I think that gap happens sometimes because some kids just don’t have access to books,” says Short.

They say if the bill is passed it would allow WLEC to double the number of children who are mailed an age-appropriate book each month until the age of 5.

WLEC currently serves over 2,000 children.