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Citadel News Service
30 Aug 2017

National authors, artists to inspire young readers at local school visits

Author visits apart of 2017-18 Literacy Initiative to begin Nov. 1

A new school year means a new opportunity to get local students excited about reading and appreciating literature. This year’s Authors in Schools initiative, hosted by the Zucker Family School of Education at The Citadel, is bringing in three new, nationally recognized authors to visit and read to three local schools in Charleston.

This year, three Charleston County District schools—Mitchell Math and Science Elementary, Sanders-Clyde Creative Arts, and Goodwin Elementary—will each host authors Carmen Agra Deedy, Michael Shoulders and Don Tate in September, February and May, respectively.

The Authors in Schools program is a literacy initiative created to enrich the lives of students by placing the authors and illustrators of children’s books into their schools. The marvels of literature and storytelling are brought to life as students and teachers interact with the individuals who write and illustrate the books.

“Our partnership with the Zucker Family School of Education at The Citadel has made it possible to expose our students to rich literature and entertaining author visits that otherwise would not happen,” said Deborah Smith, principal at Mitchell Math and Science Elementary. “Our students love the visiting authors and illustrators. It has opened a whole new world for them.”

Below is a schedule of visiting authors and illustrators for the 2017-18 school year:

Author Michael Shoulders
9 a.m. - 3 p.m.
Nov. 1, 2017, Mitchell Math and Science Elementary School
Nov. 2, 2017, Sanders-Clyde Creative Arts School
Nov. 3, 2017, Goodwin Elementary School m-shoulders

Michael Shoulders is an internationally renowned author of more than 14 children's books such as Crossing the Deadline, T is for Titanic and D is for Dump Truck. Shoulders taught for 14 years before working in administration in Tennessee’s Clarksville-Montgomery County school system. He is the recipient of the National Parenting Publishers Award as well as the Eureka Silver Award. In 2008, he received the Social Studies Book of The Year for Young Children.

Shoulders visits nearly 80 schools and conferences across America and Europe each year spreading his message, “Reading is magic!” For more information on Shoulders, please visit his website:

Author, illustrator Don Tate
9 a.m. - 3 p.m.
Feb. 6, 2018, Mitchell Math and Science Elementary School
Feb. 7, 2018, Sanders-Clyde Creative Arts School
Feb. 8, 2018, Goodwin Elementary Schooldontate

Don Tate is an award-winning author and illustrator of numerous critically acclaimed children’s books, including The Cart That Carried Martin, Hope’s Gift, Poet: The Remarkable Story of George Moses Horton, and It Jes’ Happened: When Bill Traylor Started to Draw.

Tate is the first and only two-time winner of an Ezra Jack Keats Book Award. In 2016, he received the Christopher Award and the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators Crystal Kite Award. Tate’s latest written and illustrated book is titled Strong as Sandow: How Eugen Sandow Became the Strongest Man on Earth. Tate is also a founding host of The Brown Bookshelf—a blog dedicated to books for young African American readers. He also serves as artist outreach coordinator for the We Need Diverse Books organization, created to address the lack of diverse narratives in children’s literature.

For more information on Tate, please visit his website:

Author Carmen Agra Deedy
9 a.m. - 3 p.m.
May 22, 2018, Mitchell Math and Science Elementary School
May 23, 2018, Sanders-Clyde Creative Arts School
May 24, 2018, Goodwin Elementary School carmendeedy

Critically acclaimed author and storyteller Carmen Agra Deedy has written over 10 books for children, including The Library Dragon, The Cheshire Cheese Cat, and 14 Cows for America, a New York Times best seller. She is the host of the four-time Emmy-winning children’s program, Love That Book! Deedy is also an accomplished lecturer, having been a guest speaker for both the TED and TEDx Conferences and the National Book Festival hosted by the Library of Congress.

Her latest picture book, The Rooster Who Would Not Be Quiet!, was released earlier this year. The Book of Unintended Consequences, a young adult novel, is scheduled for release in 2018.

For more information on Deedy, please visit her website:

Each of the author visits to the local schools are free and open to the public. Visitors are asked to sign-in at the respective school’s front desk to obtain a visitor’s pass.

Media is welcome and encouraged to cover all authors in schools events. Advance notice is requested by emailing Erika LeGendre, communications specialist, at

About The Zucker Family School of Education at The Citadel
The Zucker Family School of Education has been educating teachers for 50 years for schools around South Carolina and across the nation. The purpose of the Zucker School of Education’s undergraduate and graduate programs is to serve the people of the Lowcountry, the state of South Carolina, the Southeast, and the nation by providing high quality programs in the preparation of middle and secondary teachers, professional educators, and school counselors. Through its initial program for teacher candidates for P-12 schools and advanced programs for professional educators in P-20 schools, the Zucker Family School of Education cultivates undergraduate and graduate students into principled educational leaders capable of and committed to transforming schools into learning communities where all children and youth succeed.

Achieving excellence in the education and development of principled leaders
Media Contact:
Kim Keelor-Parker
(843) 953-2155
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