A few years ago, there was substantial attention paid to a Michelle Obama initiative on “food deserts” (see Do Your Students Live In Food Deserts?).
Now, researchers have found – to no surprise for anyone familiar with many lower-income communities – large numbers of our students live in “book deserts.”
Here’s an excerpt from an article at The Atlantic headlined Where Books Are All But Nonexistent:
And here’s how the article ended:
As an experiment, Neuman and her team—with funding from JetBlue, which also helped fund her latest research—set up a vending machine in a busy area in Anacostia last summer where kids could pick up books for free. Within six weeks, according to Neuman, 27,000 books were given away. “It’s designed to say to people, ‘strike down that notion that these people don’t care about their children’—they deeply care,” she said. “What they lack are the resources to enable their children to be successful.”