A Letter From Dr. Mary Jo Skillings

Dr. Mary Jo Skillings
Department Chair,
Language, Literacy,
and Culture,
CSU San Bernardino.

Dear Watson & Associates (Jim and Judy):

I wanted to update you about the College of Education’s Literacy Center expansion of services to include almost 30 young people between the ages of 14-18 who are in the San Bernardino County Probation Department programs. These students will be transported to our campus for completion of a diagnostic to determine their individual literacy needs. Following the analysis by our Credentialed Reading Specialists, they will come to our campus every Wednesday for individual and small group tutoring. The San Bernardino Chief of Police had requested the development of a literacy program for these young people; however, the Probation Department felt that our Literacy Center was already in place and ready for students.

These students will receive tutoring as well as a college campus experience, and upon the completion of their probation period with the county, their parents may continue their participation in the tutoring program. It is our belief that this kind of support, both in literacy and in thinking beyond their immediate circumstances, will make a difference in our society, one child at a time.

Last week Diane Brantley held a Parent Orientation meeting for the families of the children who are in our K-12 Literacy Tutoring Program. The room was full and parents stayed much longer than the scheduled time to find out about the program we offer and how they can support their children’s reading at home.

To say we are grateful to you for your generosity and continued support of what we are attempting to do, doesn’t begin to express what I am feeling. Thanks to your company, we will serve about 200 children and their families this year.

Sincerest thanks to you and your wonderful Associates for what you have made possible. And we are just beginning. We look forward to the day when we will be in our new facility and expanding our services to include Oral Language Development and Adult Literacy. Thank you again for all you have done to make this program go from a vision to the possible.

Mary Jo Skillings