Taylor Swift Donates 25,000 Books to New York City Schools
If you enjoy reading Electric Literature, join our mailing list! We’ll send you the best of EL each week, and you’ll be the first to know about upcoming submissions periods and virtual events.
by Melissa Ragsdale
Singer and songwriter Taylor Swift has partnered with Scholastic’s Possible Fund to donate 25,000 books to New York City schools in need. 25 schools will receive donations of 1,000 books — a game changer for any school’s students.
The “Open a World of Possible” initiative aims to encourage independent reading in young readers. According to their mission statement, “The right book is a key. It opens a world of greater understanding, self-motivation, and joy. It opens up a world of possible.” The initiative also stresses the importance of children being able to pick out books for themselves, making a vast selection of material all the more critical.
These values are supported by the most recent Scholastic Kids and Family Reading Report, which found that “children from lower-income households are more likely to read books for fun in school and far less likely to read books outside of school than their higher-income peers…Nine in ten kids agree their favorite books — and the ones they are the most likely to finish — are the ones they pick out themselves.”
Swift has previously supported the initiative with this webcast she filmed for classrooms in 2014, in which she discusses how reading and writing have opened up a world for her.
“I wouldn’t be a songwriter if it wasn’t for the books I read as a kid,” Swift tells students in the webcast, “and I think that…when you can escape into a book it trains your imagination to think big and to think that more can exist than what you see.”