Gretchen Brion-Meisels

Grade 6 Teacher, Fletcher Maynard Academy, Cambridge, Massachusetts

As a Cambridge Public School teacher, I have relied upon the staff and resources at New Words to increase the multicultural literacy in my classroom. Of particular importance has been the children’s literature around issues of gender, class, ethnicity and sexuality. These texts are difficult - often impossible - to find without the help of skilled librarians and booksellers. As a teacher, I have found the resources at New Words invaluable in my quest to reach all of my students’ needs. It would be a great loss for us, as educators, if this resource were no longer available.

The Center for New Words would fill a great need in our community - serving as a resource to both students and parents. As a teacher, it is disappointing how few genuine resources are available for growing adolescents - resources that deal with the issues that are most important in their lives. The Center for New Words would make these resources readily available. Furthermore, the programs that are proposed to increase literacy would be a welcome addition to our community. I would love to be able to take young people to readings, have parents participate in book groups or connect my girls to special activities. There is no place I can think of better equipped to pull off this daunting, but critical, task.