Campus Spotlight – Forest Lane Academy

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Atmos Energy and Texas Health Resources have teamed up with area schools and Scholastic Book Fairs to ensure that kids have better access to quality reading material.

These invaluable RISD partners brought this venture to RISD for the first time recently as more than 650 students in Pre-K through sixth grade at Forest Lane Academy were able to choose two books each at the May 1 book fair.

Forest Lane Academy LITE Cecilia Whitham said the free books have given many students an opportunity to feel the magic of a Scholastic Book Fair for the first time. Whitman thanked Atmos and Texas Health for providing students with the opportunity to experience the joy of choosing a new book that they get to keep just for themselves.

“We all know that readers are leaders, and we truly have some great future leaders here at Forest Lane Academy,” Whitham said. “Thank you for believing in them just as much as we do! The excitement was contagious, and I lost count of the number of hugs and thank yous that we got from both students and teachers.” 

The collaboration between Atmos Energy and Texas Health began in 2022 and aims to deliver 20,000 free books to nearly 10,000 children in four counties in North Texas this year. Scholastic also donated learning supplies and additional books to the school to help close literacy gaps.

“It’s really a joy to see the faces of these children when they realize they can pick out their own books and take them home. Our goal is to set them up for a love of reading that lasts a lifetime and gives every child access to resources to help them read at grade level,” said Kimberly Smith, public affairs manager of Atmos Energy.

Atmos and Texas Health plan to return to Forest Lane Academy this fall to build a learning garden, with raised beds that will help students learn how to grow their own fruits and vegetables and experience the joys and skills of gardening.

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