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Summer Reading Success: 84,000 Digital Books Checked Out by National Heritage Academies Students

Kelsey Pardue  |  August 27, 2021
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT
Kelsey Pardue
kpardue@nhaschools.com
(616) 464-2235
            Aug. 25, 2021
 
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich., Aug. 25, 2021 — In June 2021, National Heritage Academies (NHA) took action in providing digital access to reading resources for students. By collaborating with Sora, an online library tool, NHA found a way to get books into students’ hands no matter their location.

To date, over 84,000 digital books have been checked out by NHA students from Sora. The Sora app was designed around the modern student reading experience and empowers students to discover and enjoy ebooks and audiobooks. The experience is tailored to the student as it only shows books that fall under their reading level. With various reading categories and over 7,000 titles, there’s something for everyone. Some categories include, “Everybody Has a Story”, “Picture Books Favorites”, “Meet Someone New”, and “Feelings, Friendships, and Finding Solutions”, to name a few.

Alexandra Brown, educational technology specialist at NHA, shared that not only does NHA provide school and classroom libraries with access to books, but now students have access to digital libraries so that NHA continues to support its purpose.

The purpose for NHA school libraries is to:
  • Provide equitable physical and intellectual access to the resources and tools essential for learning and collaboration. The purpose of library education is to cultivate informationally-literate learners in an ever-changing world who are equipped with the resources and skills to become independent critical readers, thinkers, and lifelong learners who develop an appreciation for reading a variety of genres.
“We’re thrilled to see the noteworthy success of National Heritage Academies’ digital collection since it launched in June 2021. This clearly speaks to the effort the school’s educators put into finding new ways to encourage reading in all forms, including ebooks and audiobooks in Sora during the summer,” said Connie Bowman, Account Executive at OverDrive Education. “As an example of their success, NHA has the highest digital book checkouts from Sora’s Sweet Reads summer reading program of any school around the world!”

Jaelyn Wheaton, educational technology administrator at NHA, feels humbled because reading can be a lost art at times. So, to see the number of check outs that the students have, knowing it’s for fun and pleasure, is amazing to witness. “We live in a different world now where things need to be digitized and accessible from different platforms,” said Wheaton. “Onboarding Sora helps propel us in that direction and helps us stay relevant with the technology world as it progresses.”

The digital book platform does not replace school, the classroom, or public libraries, explained Brown, but it provides additional titles so that NHA students are empowered to have access anytime and everywhere.

About National Heritage Academies:
NHA is a network of 98 tuition-free, public charter schools across nine states, serving more than 60,000 students in kindergarten through 12th grade. For more information, visit nhaschools.com.