SAISD 4th-grader first in city to read way to national Scholastic award

SAISD 4th-grader first in city to read way to Scholastic award
By SAISD Communications


Reading didn’t come easy for Daniel Guerrero, but persistence and hard work have paid off for the Beacon Hill Elementary School 4th-grader, who on April 16 was recognized by Scholastic as the first-ever San Antonio student to be named an All-Star Awards winner by the book publisher.

Guerrero was recognized by Scholastic during a celebration at the school that included his classmates, parents and grandparents, resulting in a day that was “a very exciting day for me, and I will never forget it.”

Only 12 students in the nation are chosen for Scholastic’s All-Star Awards.

As a 2013 Scholastic System 44 All-Star winner, Guerrero received $1,200 in prize money to spend as he wishes, some of which he plans to put aside for his college education. At the ceremony, he showcased his reading skills by reading aloud a statement he wrote as part of the application process.

“I made a goal to myself to get to the last book in the (System 44) program,” he told the audience. “Now I am on book thirty-three (of 36). The program has also helped me with behavior. It feels like I get in trouble less because when I read…I feel like I’m in a different place.”

Not only has the program helped Guerrero to be a stronger reader, but it has had a confidence-boosting effect.

Daniel’s teacher, Erin Pawlicki, was recognized alongside him and received $1,000 of Scholastic credit to purchase items from the publisher’s catalog.

“I love listening to him read when he reads his books out loud,” Pawlicki said. “He’s just a beautiful, fluent reader.”

Also, Clifford the Big Red Dog distributed bags of brand-new Scholastic books to 3rd- and 4th-grade teachers to send home with their students, helping to promote SAISD’s goal of increased student literacy.

Fifty-two SAISD campuses use Scholastic’s Read 180 or System 44 programs, or both. The annual All-Star Awards contest is open to students in the 3rd through 12th grades.