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Scholastic Leaps Into Summer Reading With 2016 Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge and Nationwide Reading Road Trip

NEW YORK, NY – Scholastic (NASDAQ: SCHL), the global children’s publishing, education and media company, is ramping up its Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge campaign to help kids take a “summer leap” into books. Research shows that when kids read more books over the summer, they perform better at school in the fall.1 To jumpstart the 2016 Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge, bestselling author Dav Pilkey (Captain Underpants and the new Dog Man series), has signed on as the Scholastic Summer Reading Global Ambassador. As part of the campaign, Pilkey is launching a “Be A Reading Superhero” national contest for one school in each U.S. state, territory and in the District of Columbia to win a free book for every student. With their new books provided by Pilkey, even more students will be ready to track their summer reading minutes on the free Summer Reading Challenge website, and to earn virtual rewards.

To further spread the message of the importance of summer reading, Scholastic is launching a traveling Summer Reading Road Trip that will bring family reading festivals to kids and families across 20 U.S cities, beginning May 2, 2016 and running through July 31, 2016 (see details and list of cities below).


Starting today, educators can begin pre-registering their students (grades K–8) in the Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge, the free online summer reading program that has generated more than 1 billion reading minutes from kids around the world since 2009.  Once a class is registered, teachers are set to track their students’ reading progress all summer and access free reading resources including: a reading pledge, letters to parents, and free summer book lists for pre-K through Young Adult, including Spanish and bilingual titles.


In support of this year’s theme, “Be a Reading Superhero,” author Dav Pilkey has pledged to be a real-life superhero and help get books into the hands of kids across the country before the summer break. Starting today, teachers can enter the Dav Pilkey ‘Be a Reading Superhero’ Educator Contest for a chance to win a free summer reading book for every child in their school. One school in each U.S. state, territory and in the District of Columbia will be selected to win an array of popular, age-appropriate Scholastic titles. The contest ends April 11, 2016. For more details and rules, please click here.


Starting May 2, 2016, Scholastic is hitting the road with two Scholastic Summer Reading Road Trip RVs that will visit bookstores, schools and libraries across the country. Kids and families can visit the “pop-up” reading community events, meet some of their favorite authors and illustrators, and engage in fun reading activities. The RVs will visit cities nationwide throughout the summer, including: Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Cincinnati, Denver, Los Angeles, Miami, New York CityOrlando, Salt Lake City, San Francisco, San Jose, and Seattle. Parents and educators can follow the progress of the Scholastic Summer Reading Road Trip on social media @Scholastic and #SummerReading, and on the Summer Reading Challenge website (scholastic.com/summer). 


“When it comes to kids and reading, there’s no such thing as a guilty pleasure,” said Dav Pilkey, international bestselling author and creator of the phenomenally popular Captain Underpants series. “Even though I struggled with reading growing up because of my dyslexia, I was fortunate to have parents who encouraged me to choose the books I wanted to read: silly books with tons of illustrations that made me laugh out loud. And if it weren’t for these books that motivated me to keep turning the page, I wouldn’t be the writer I am today. Summer is a great time to discover the fun and joy of reading and I am honored to be the global ambassador of the Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge campaign.”

Speaking on the value of summer reading, Michael Haggen, Chief Academic Officer, Scholastic Education said, “Summer is an opportunity to turn the summer slide into a summer leap, and help all students discover the joys of reading. Students need to be able to choose what to read, to follow their interests and passions, and read books of any difficulty level—giving them the opportunity to be a Reading Superhero. The Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge takes a blended approach to helping schools and families support and encourage children to read over the summer by combining books with online experiences.”

About the Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge:

On May 9, 2016, registered students can start logging their reading minutes. This year’s theme, “Be a Reading Superhero,” encourages kids to build their “reading muscles” by reading more and logging their reading minutes to earn virtual rewards. Throughout the 18 weeks of summer, kids will be able to unlock fun stories from 18 children’s authors who will share how they became reading superheroes. At the end of the summer, the school in each U.S. state, territory and in the District of Columbia that has logged the most reading minutes will be named “Best in State,” featured in the 2017 Scholastic Book of World Records, and will receive a commemorative plaque as well as an official Scholastic party kit to celebrate their achievement.

To learn more about Scholastic (NASDAQ: SCHL) and the Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge, please visit mediaroom.scholastic.com/SummerReadingChallenge.


(1) Karl Alexander, Doris Entwistle, Linda Steffel Olson, “Lasting Consequences of the Summer Learning Gap,” American Sociological Review 72 (April 2007).

For complete rules, go to: www.scholastic.com/summer/contest/teacher/


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