On March 14, 2019, the Minnesota House Early Childhood Finance and Policy Committee will hear a bill on funding for the early literacy program, Reach Out and Read Minnesota.
Minnesota Academy of Family Physicians President Glenn Nemec, MD, submitted the following to the committee for review.
The Minnesota Academy of Family Physicians, representing 3,100+ family physician members across Minnesota, supports HF 2111 and Minnesota’s Reach Out and Read program.
Family physicians take care of patients at all stages of life and recognize that early childhood interventions are critical—not only to the success and wellbeing of our youngest citizens, but also to address the deep disparities in our state.
Multiple studies in high-risk populations show that the Reach Out and Read model results in parents being more likely to regularly read with their children. This model includes advising parents of infants, toddlers and preschool-aged children about the importance of reading aloud, counseling parents about book-related/reading strategies, modeling, and providing developmentally appropriate books to children at clinic visits.
In addition, children participating in Reach Out and Read are more likely to have significantly improved language development by the age of 24 months when compared with their non-participating peers. (Pediatrics, August 2014).
Please support HF 2111 and the investment in improving the literacy of Minnesota’s children by expanding the Reach Out and Read program to ALL communities and ALL children and their families in Minnesota.
More about Reach Out and Read
There are 263 Reach Out and Read program sites at clinics across Minnesota, serving 154,000 children.
Watch this video for an overview of Reach Out and Read: