Reader Partners, a kindergarten to fourth-grade literacy program through Tulsa Public Schools, received its largest corporate gift on Thursday.

At an event at Wayman Tisdale Fine Arts Academy, PSO announced that Reading Partners will receive a five-year, $250,000 grant from the AEP Foundation.

"Literacy is fundamental to preparing our next workforce," Peggy Simmons, president and chief operating officer of AEP-PSO, said at the announcement. "If one-on-one attention is what is needed by our future workforce and our future leaders, then that's exactly what we need to do. I'm glad that PSO is able to do just that."

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Reading Partners in 2013 began placing community volunteers in the low-income elementary schools of Tulsa Public Schools to help students master basic reading skills.

"We are grateful to PSO and the AEP Foundation for this tremendous gift," Justin Harlan, senior executive director, Reading Partners in Tulsa, said in a statement. "The grant will allow us to strengthen our ties to the community of volunteers and positively impact the learning opportunities for our children."

Debrorah Gist is Tulsa Public Schools Superintendent.

"We know that the one-one-one support our students receive from Reading Partners volunteers make a meaningful difference for our young readers who are working to reach grade-level literacy," she said in a statement. "We are grateful to the AEP Foundation for this extraordinary investment in building brighter futures for our students."


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