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Muskegon County literacy initiative launches at Grand Rapids school

Men Of Color Read started in Muskegon County and has now launched in a Grand Rapids school.

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — A literacy initiative first started in Muskegon County in 2018 has now launched at its first school in Grand Rapids. 

Men of Color Read (MOCR) is an ongoing monthly program was created to help eradicate functional illiteracy within communities like Muskegon and Grand Rapids. 

The program launched at its first Grand Rapids school Friday at Martin Luther King Jr. Leadership Academy. 

The goal of MOCR is to help increase student's interest in reading in elementary school, while also working to decrease the school drop out rate in urban communities.

Being able to read proficiently doesn't just have an impact on a student's education and grades, it has an impact on many far-reaching factors in a student's life. 

Michigan law states that third graders may repeat third grade if they are more than one grade level behind and children who can't read proficiently by grade 4 are 4 times likelier to drop out of school, according to MOCR.

Great time reading with our youth today during Men of Color Read! Kumasi Mack Jon Covington Jeremy Lenertz Floyd Cook Jr

Other literacy statistics that MOCR is aiming to change:

  • Over 70% of America's inmates cannot read above a 4th grade level.
  • Nearly 85% of the juveniles who face trial in the juvenile court system are functionally illiterate
  • More than 60% of all inmates are functionally illiterate.
  • Black men make up less than 2 percent of our country's teachers.

More information about the Men of Color Read can be found on the program's Facebook page.

13 ON YOUR SIDE is committed to changing the landscape of literacy in West Michigan:

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