First in Series of Booklets for Parents Out

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WASHINGTON--The Education Department last week released the first in a series of publications designed to help parents improve their childrens' performance in school.

The 29-page booklet, "Becoming a Nation of Readers: What Parents Can Do,'' is one of eight planned for release this year.

Based on the 1985 commission report, "Becoming A Nation of Readers,'' the publication recommends that parents regularly read aloud to their children, take them to libraries and bookstores, and encourage the practice of reading during leisure time.

Department officials said that future publications would cover such topics as educational choice, children's television-viewing habits, and local education budgets.

The premier publication, which will be distributed to several large school systems, is also notable because it was published by a major textbook firm, D.C. Heath and Company, rather than through the Government Printing Office. Chester E. Finn Jr., assistant secretary for research and improvement, said the arrangement will allow "our tax dollars to go further.''

Mr. Finn also said the Fairfax County, Va., school district is developing three simpler versions of the publication for parents who want to help their children learn to read but lack adequate reading skills themselves.

Copies of "Becoming a Nation of Readers: What Parents Can Do,'' are available for 50 cents each from the Consumer Information Center, Pueblo, Colo. 81009.

Requests for the booklet in multiples of 10 should be addressed to: What Parents Can Do, D.C. Heath and Company, Dept. 6243, 95 Hayden Ave., Lexington, Mass. 02173. As of late last week, the publisher had not yet determined the reduced rate for multiple requests.--E.F.

Vol. 07, Issue 27

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