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Helping Children Become Lifelong Readers Is a Family Affair for Georgia First Lady Sandra Deal


An unprecedented alliance of community leaders, educators, librarians, health and business professionals, juvenile court judges, elected officials, and the first lady of Georgia, assembled in September to figure out how to get every child in the state on the path to reading proficiently by third grade by 2020. They rolled up their sleeves at a two-day Get Georgia Reading Community Action Summit to design a plan for applying a common agenda in communities across the state.

To help ignite their imaginations and spark new ideas, some of the state’s most influential leaders shared intimate stories from their work—and personal lives—about the power of reading and how it changes lives. We are excited to share all these amazing stories with you over the coming weeks.

Our first video features Georgia first lady Sandra Deal. The daughter of educators, Mrs. Deal has dedicated her life to encouraging childhood education. As a Georgia public school teacher, she taught for more than 15 years and retired as a sixth-grade middle school teacher in Hall County. She has continued her lifelong mission in her role as Georgia’s first lady, because promoting literacy has been one of her top priorities.

We are grateful to Campaign partner Georgia Public Broadcasting for recording and producing the lightning talks from our Community Action Summit.

We are compiling the ideas and insights that came out of the Summit, and will soon begin to create a community toolkit to support our partners as they firmly root the Get Georgia Reading Campaign’s common agenda in communities across the state.