For immediate release | March 28, 2023

Charlotte Chung receives AASL Innovative Reading Grant

CHICAGO – Charlotte Chung, media specialist at Suncrest Elementary School in Morgantown, West Virginia, is the recipient of the 2023 American Association of School Librarians’ (AASL) Innovative Reading Grant. Sponsored by Capstone, the $2,500 grant supports the planning and implementation of a unique and innovative program for children that motivates and encourages reading, especially with struggling readers.

Chung’s project, “Supporting the Literacy Development of English Language Learners at Suncrest Elementary School with a Diverse Language Book Collection,” will address a growing English language learning student population. With over 40 languages spoken at schools in the county, and after garnering feedback and suggestions from the community, Chung will use the grant funds to purchase books in diverse languages spoken and read in Monongalia County schools. As Chung notes, “by providing books in these students’ first language(s), as school librarians we can help to support the literacy and educational goals of ALL of our students–not just our students who are proficient in the English language.”

“The committee was struck by the level of reach for this project,” said Cynthia Zervos, committee chair. “Chung’s project will bring in parents, asking for their input to help select books, and students will be able to share the books with their family members. Additionally, the books will be made available to all students in Monongalia County Schools through interlibrary loan extending the impact of this grant beyond the walls of Suncrest Elementary.”

“Chung’s recognition that an inclusive collection is essential for an equitable learning experience is at the core of what school libraries do for every learner,” said AASL President Kathy Lester. “To take this grant and extend to the families and other students in the county advances and highlights the value of a school librarian as a leader in the community.”

The AASL award winners will be recognized during the 2023 AASL National Conference taking place October 19-21 in Tampa, Florida.

The American Association of School Librarians,, a division of the American Library Association (ALA), empowers leaders to transform teaching and learning.


Allison Cline

Deputy Executive Director