United Way launches enrollment for Imagination Library program at Caddo Heights Elementary

In Louisiana, 60% of the children who show up for kindergarten are not kindergarten ready
Published: Feb. 14, 2023 at 5:04 PM CST
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SHREVEPORT, La. (KSLA) - On Tuesday, Feb. 14, United Way of Northwest Louisiana began enrollment for its Imagination Library for pre-k students of Caddo Heights Elementary.

Imagination Library is a program created by Dolly Parton, which started in Tennessee in honor of her father, who was illiterate. Students will receive books, videos and curriculum each month to help them get ready for kindergarten.

“And the whole purpose of the program is to get children ready for kindergarten. In Louisiana, 60% of the children who show up for kindergarten are not kindergarten ready. And so having books in the home will help lower that statistic,” said Latoria Thomas, CEO of United Way of Northwest Louisiana.

An anonymous donor sponsored the pre-k students at Caddo Heights and will sponsor a few future classes as well. Anyone willing to donate to the Imagination Library program in Shreveport is urged to contact United Way of Northwest Louisiana.

[RELATED: Report: Louisiana third least educated state in nation]


The Louisiana Department of Education released its Fall 2022 Reading Report on Nov. 30. It shows how public school students in grades K-3 scored on a literacy screener given during the first 30 days of the current school year.

Louisiana’s overall score improved and students in grades 1-3 grew for the second consecutive year, while kindergarten scores saw a decline. This year’s third-graders earned their highest score since 2018.

The Fall 2022 Reading Report includes state, school system and school data for public school students in grades K-3. School systems can choose among four research-based screening assessments to administer. Students who take a screener earn either “On or Above Benchmark” or “Below Benchmark.”

Statewide results below show students scoring “On or Above Benchmark”:


Delve into Louisiana’s Fall 2022 Reading Report below to learn how students at your child’s school performed:

Learn more about Louisiana’s efforts to combat illiteracy