Literacy Clearinghouse

Davis, Nancy Harvey; Fitzgerald, Pam
September 1989
Library Journal;9/1/1989, Vol. 114 Issue 14, p145
Trade Publication
This article describes several literacy programs implemented by the library staff of the Free Library of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Underlying the literacy work undertaken by The Free Library has been the belief that its expertise is in sourcing, evaluation, and acquisition of literacy materials for service agencies throughout the city. Since 1967, the Reader Development Program (RDP)--the oldest in the country--has been involved in the identification, review, and purchase of literacy instructional materials for adults. RDP provides eligible agencies with over 500 titles in quantity and without cost to teach over 15,000 illiterate and English as a second language (ESL) adults each year. The Workplace, an educational information center run by Free librarian K. Paul Savedow and promoted and developed by the W. K. Kellogg Foundation, relies on high interest/low reading level materials. The Workplace's role is to cooperate with and supplement other community agencies by providing free and accessible information on job searching, training, interviewing, and sources of career education. When asked about The Free Library's role in the city's literacy services, Thelma Reese, executive director of the Commission on Literacy, praised The Free Library as an active partner and inspiration...oftentimes a leader in the adult literacy effort.


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