WAXAHACHIE — For 20 years, Waxahachie ISD has encouraged students districtwide to Drop Everything and Read [D.E.A.R.] for a day — and that is just what they, along with 500 local volunteers, will do.

On Friday, Feb. 3, volunteers from businesses, service organizations, churches, colleges and PTO’s are invited to WISD campuses to read to classrooms and encourage students the realize the value of reading.

As told by a D.E.A.R. Day press release, “Businesses, organizations, and individuals are donating books so that every elementary classroom in Waxahachie ISD has at least one new book for the day. Since the program began 20 years ago, over 4,450 books have been donated and 9,500 hours of reading are volunteered for this annual event!”

Since the beginning of D.E.A.R. Day, readers have volunteered at the event for a total of 9,000 hours.

Partners in Education director Melissa Cobb noted that “We are very grateful for the continued and faithful support of Waxahachie schools from the outstanding volunteers of the Waxahachie community.”

Many of the readers return each year to participate in the annual event.

A reader from last year's event, who was not identified in the WISD press release, shared, “I absolutely love every minute and look forward to next time. Awesome – great experience! This is one of my favorite events of the year, thanks for having me! This is a great opportunity for all of us.”

Guest readers are placed in every classroom, grades Pre-K through sixth. Residents are invited to join WISD’s D.E.A.R. Day at all elementary campuses at 8:45 a.m. and 10:15 a.m., Finley Junior High at 8:45 a.m. and Howard Junior High at 10:15 a.m.

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Kelsey Poynor, @KPoynor_WDL

(469) 517-1454