TROY, OHIO – One local educator’s passion for eliminating the summer slide will take center stage at the 2014 South by Southwest Education (SXSWedu) Conference & Festival in Austin, TX, March 3-6.

Kids Read Now Executive Director Barbara Lurie will join the education field’s most energetic and innovative leaders from all backgrounds of the learning landscape to lead a panel discussion on the “summer reading slide” at SXSWedu Conference & Festival. Lurie will guide panelists in addressing the long-term implications of the summer reading slide and how communities can work together across sectors more effectively. Panelists include Nan Whaley, City Commissioner of the City of Dayton; Thomas Lasley, Director of nonprofit Learn to Earn; and Garry Martin, Principal of Demmitt Elementary School in Vandalia.

“The summer slide is a very real, very serious issue with life-altering consequences for our most vulnerable children,” says Kids Read Now Executive Director, Barbara Lurie. “What communities need to realize is that it is much bigger than just schools, just teachers. We need to work together if we want our children to beat the slide and go on to succeed in school and employment.”

“Ending Summer Slide: Collaborate and Innovate” was chosen among 700 proposals sent to the coordinators of the conference. The four-day event is a platform for the growing SXSWedu community to connect, collaborate, create and change how we teach and learn. Four days before the main event, the event brings together teachers, administrators, university professors, business and policy leaders to discuss the future of education.

Members of the discussion panel will present their experiences and concerns with education nationally. Panelists will address the following questions:

• What are the long-term implications of the summer reading slide and its consequences for communities as a whole?
• What unique strengths can governments, teachers, and nonprofits offer to students and to one another to stem summer learning loss?
• How can communities work together across sectors more effectively, and what benefit does collective impact bring to children struggling with the summer reading slide?


The 2014 SXSW Conference & Festival will be held in Austin, Texas on March 3-6, 2014. Learn more at

About Kids Read Now
A nonprofit organization founded by Barbara and Leib Lurie in 2011 seeking for the decline of “summer reading slide”. Kids Read Now has the goal of encouraging children to read during the summer months to prevent reading loss and improve reading skills. This year the organization plans to reach out to between 6 and 8 thousand students in grades K-3. Studies have proven that economically disadvantaged children who completed the program show more improvement when compared with the results of other students that did not participate. The Lurie Foundation, Miami County Foundation, Piqua Community Foundation, Troy Foundation, United Way, Optimists International, and private donations fund kids Read Now. For more information, visit

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