March 21, 2014
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Acts of Love kicks off its Family Literacy Academy with a series of events to support the launch of their first installation of the academy on Saturday, March 29th from 9am to Noon, at Jacob Beidler Elementary, located in the East Garfield Park Neighborhood at 3151 W. Walnut St.

The “Family Literacy Academy” will provide an opportunity for families that live in under-served communities to come together for free family breakfast, family literacy, and family fun at the school for one Saturday every month in March-April and September-October.

The goals of the program are to improve ISAT reading scores and reading techniques; promote family literacy inside the home; provide free resources for parents; and provide free books for young people. Each month the academy will engage students at different grade levels, starting with K-2nd, with the final academy including all grade levels.

The idea for the collaboration began when Acts of Love founder, William Hall, was introduced to Beidler principal, Charles Anderson, through Acts of Love’s “No TV Week”. Mr. Hall says, “When Principal Anderson heard about Acts of Love’s commitment to literacy and young people in poor communities, he saw endless possibilities.”

Over time, Mr. Hall learned significant facts about the school, including 426 students attend Jacob Beidler. 93 percent are from low-income households. 16 percent of students at Jacob Beidler are homeless. Only 22 percent of second graders are reading at grade level. Only 35 percent of Beidler Elementary School students met or exceeded standards across all sections of the ISAT test, and only 19.2 percent of 8th graders meet ISAT reading standards.

“It is my hope that through the literacy academy, we can begin a culture of family reading and learning that will begin the process of reversing these statistics,” says Hall.

Principal Anderson is an innovative leader and welcomes opportunities that align with Chicago Public Schools vision for student success and progression. Working in partnership with Acts of Love and being a part of “The Family Literacy Academy” aims to engage and empower families and communities in addition to offering support systems that meet student needs – reflecting Pillars 2 & 3 of the CPS “The Next Generation: Chicago’s Children” 2013-2018 Action Plan.

The Family Literacy Academy will take place monthly and at the end of each Family Literacy Academy Session, students will receive free books.


The full kick-off schedule is as follows:

Family Literacy Academy Volunteer Informational
Tuesday, March 25th
St. James Lutheran Church
8000 South Michigan Ave.
Chicago, IL 60619

Family Literacy Academy Kick-off Fundraiser
Thursday, March 27th
Northeastern University
Donald F. Bailey Center
700 E. Oakwood Boulevard – 2nd FL
Chicago, IL 60653

Family Literacy Academy at Beidler Elementary
Saturday, March 29th
Jacob Beidler Elementary
3151 W. Walnut Street
Chicago, IL 60612

For more information on the tour visit, Facebook (Acts of Love Campaign), Twitter (@loveyoungpeople), Instagram (LoveYoungPeople) and YouTube (Acts of Love).

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