Friends Foundation of BPL awarded $16,000 Community Foundation Grant for Summer Literacy Leaders


Birmingham, Ala. - The Friends Foundation of the Birmingham Public Library (BPL) has been awarded a $16,000 grant from the Community Foundation of Greater Birmingham to provide free reading and math tutoring for second- and third-grade students in Birmingham City Schools

This program aims to address learning deficits among young children, brought on by remote and hybrid learning formats due to the COVID-19 pandemic. BPL will offer these sessions at five library locations- Central (downtown), Avondale, Five Points West, North Birmingham and Springville Road. The program begins on Monday, June 14 and runs through July 8.

Each of the five libraries will be assigned a literacy leader (tutor)  -  a high school junior, senior or college student -   and a certified teacher to implement and oversee the program. Literacy leaders will receive a monetary stipend and access to classes on budgeting and other critical life and job skills, using the Birmingham Public Library LRNG platform. 

The LRNG platform enables young people to access both local and national opportunities from their computer, smartphone or tablet. In addition, two certified teachers will provide daily support and specialized training throughout the four weeks, including initial training and orientation for the mentors on June 11. 

The teachers will also work with BPL librarians to create pre- and post-tests to measure student progress in this program. BPL Youth Librarians will establish a collection of books and manipulatives to be used during this summer program. 

“Mentoring is an important component of this program as it sets up strong relationships between students and their tutors which is a factor for student’s success,” said Janine Langston, Interim Director of BPL.

BPL will provide the Birmingham City School System’s summer sites with a satellite library to promote literacy. Satellite libraries include 100 preselected books for all ages to use during the duration of the programs in June and July. Our librarians will present in-person summer learning programs at these summer sites.

Participants and students are strongly encouraged to visit BPL in person or virtually through

For more information about the more than 40 virtual programs and 14 craft activities taking place as part of BPL 2021 Summer Learning, click here 

About BPL 
The mission of the Birmingham Public Library is to provide the highest quality experience to our community for life-long learning, cultural enrichment, and enjoyment. This system—with 18 locations and serving the community for 135 years—is one of the largest library systems in the southeast. For additional information about the programs and services of the Birmingham Public Library, follow us on Facebook and Twitter @BPL.