Superintendent Dr. Joseph Davis has sent out letters to 170 entertainers in movies, television, music, and sports to request financial support for the district promoting reading among students in what he says will be a powerful tool in strengthen the community. Among those addressed in the letter: singers Katy Perry and Pharrell Williams, comedian Chris Rock, and Missouri native Sheryl Crow.
Davis said he watched the news coverage of the Ferguson unrest following the 2014 shooting death of Michael Brown and decided to be part of the solution.
“When it all unfolded, it did not seem real at first. Then after watching it, for so long I began to wonder what is going on in Ferguson, the world began to have eyes on,” he said.
Dr. Davis is reaching out to celebrities across the country and asking for their help, launching a $2 million campaign to promote reading among the more than 11,000 students in the district, and requesting the stars’ personal and financial support.
“I decided to reach out to them because I think it's really impacted that larger community, not just the people who are here, but people all around the country who want to see Ferguson and the community improve,” Davis said.