Follett Challenge Unveils Semifinalists, Video Winners

New York, Pennsylvania, Alaska schools in top 3; winner to be announced April 26


MCHENRY, Ill., March 7, 2016 – A first-ever finalist from the state of Alaska highlighted today’s video announcement of the three semifinalists and 10 People’s Choice Awards in the Follett Challenge. Sponsored by Follett, the fifth annual Follett Challenge will reward $200,000 in Follett products and services to the most innovative K-12 programs teaching 21st-century skills to students.

This year’s three semifinalists – singled out by elementary, middle and high schools – are:

  • Elementary: Quest Elementary School; Hilton Central School District; Hilton, New York; video: “QUEST Builds Ingenuity
  • Middle: Broughal Middle School; Bethlehem Area School District, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania; video: “GingerBuilding Project 2015
  • High: Ben Eielson Junior/Senior High School; Fairbanks North Star Borough School District; Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska; video: “Aiming High at Eielson

From the three semifinalists, a grand-prize winner will be selected and announced April 26. The overall winner will earn a $60,000 prize in Follett products and services, plus a celebration at their school. The other two semifinalists each will earn $30,000 in products and services.

The video announcement also revealed the 10 People’s Choice winners– those schools whose video submissions received the highest number of online votes from the public. Each of the winning schools earns $8,000 in Follett products and services. The top 10 are:

  1.      * Mary E. Griswold Elementary School; Berlin Public Schools; Berlin, Connecticut;video
  2.      * Marist High School; Chicago, Illinois; video
  3.      * Deer Park Elementary School; Baltimore County Public Schools; Owings Mills, Maryland; video
  4.      * Butler Middle School; Butler Area School District; Butler, Pennsylvania; video
  5.      * School Eleven; Clifton, New Jersey; video
  6.      * Reynolds School; Upper Saddle River, New Jersey; video
  7.      * Clarenceville School District; Livonia, Michigan; video
  8.      * Linn-Mar Community School District; Cedar Rapids, Iowa; video
  9.      * College Park Elementary School, Irvine, California; video
  10.  * Hopkins North Junior High School, Minnetonka, Minnesota; video

* Griswold Elementary was the top vote getter with 5,242; Marist High was second with 4,081.

“As I reflect on the winning programs we’ve seen over the past five years since we started the Follett Challenge, it’s fascinating how innovation has evolved,” said Britten Follett, vice president of marketing for Follett School Solutions, who has spearheaded the Follett Challenge since its debut. “Teachers and librarians are consistently amazing me by showcasing new ways of reaching students in our ever-changing world. Whether it’s through gamification, reading contests, makerspaces, or service learning programs, the Follett Challenge has awarded some of the most forward-thinking programs in the country.”

Follett Challenge entrants must complete an online application and submit a video describing their program. The judges seek applications illustrating critical thinking, communication, creativity and collaboration.

For more information on the Follett Challenge, visit

About Follett’s PreK-12 Business|
Follett is the largest provider of educational materials and technology solutions to PreK-12 libraries, classrooms, learning centers and school districts in the United States, and a major supplier to educational institutions worldwide. Follett distributes books, reference materials, digital resources, ebooks and audiovisual materials, as well as pre-owned textbooks. Follett also is one of the leading providers of integrated educational technology for the management of physical and digital assets, the tracking, storing and analyzing of academic data, and digital learning environment tools for the classroom focusing on student achievement.


About Follett Corporation |

For more than 140 years, Follett has been a trusted partner to pre-K and K-12 schools, districts, and college campuses, taking care of the critical details that make it easier for schools to run, teachers to teach and students to learn. Every day, Follett serves over half of the students in the United States, and works with 70,000 schools as a leading provider of education technology, services and print and digital content. Follett is higher education’s largest campus retailer and a hub for school spirit and community, operating more than 1,150 local campus stores and 1,600 virtual stores across the continent. Headquartered in Westchester, Illinois, Follett is a $2.6 billion privately held company.


White House and NSLA Select myON as Part of the Action Toolkit for Summer Learning

 The National Summer Learning Association recognizes the personalized literacy solution as key to avoiding the summer slide  


(Minneapolis, MN) March 7, 2016 — myON, a business unit of Capstone and leading provider of personalized literacy solutions for the K-12 marketplace, is proud to announce its involvement in the Champions of Change Summer Opportunity Project, a multi-agency effort led by the National Summer Learning Association (NSLA) and the White House to support communities across the country in creating happy, healthy, and productive summer opportunities for America’s youth.

As part of the project, NSLA released its 2016 Action Toolkit to guide participating communities in areas such as summer reading initiatives, nutrition, and preparing America’s young people for the jobs of today and tomorrow.

The NSLA toolkit features myON as a key solution for maximizing learning and offering a unique turnkey campaign to encourage kids to read throughout the summer. The toolkit highlights myON’s valuable tools to curb the summer slide: a focus on growth, Lexile tracking ability, personalized learning experiences, a wide range of reading choices, and simply putting more books at students’ fingertips.

The toolkit was unveiled at the Champions of Change event at the White House on February 26, 2016. myON President Todd Brekhus, along with Secretary of Education John King, Secretary of Labor Thomas Perez, mayors, school officials, and more than 250 noted individuals, attended the event to honor nine outstanding leaders from across the country for their efforts to transform summer from a time of high risk to a time of great reward for the country’s most vulnerable children. Brekhus shared his knowledge during a panel at the event, saying he believes that personalized reading is a way to address equity and access and measure reading’s growth.


“myON was one of the only solutions mentioned in this summer toolkit, which was a very high honor and very humbling,” said Brekhus. “We believe the summer of 2016 will be a great opportunity for myON to continue partnering with districts across the country to curb the summer slide and foster a love of reading in all children. Working in collaboration with so many notable, devoted agencies, including the White House, is an excellent opportunity for us to continue making a difference.”


Every summer, low-income youth lose two to three months in reading achievement, while their higher-income peers make slight gains. Year after year the losses accumulate, and by fifth grade the cumulative years of summer learning loss can leave low-income students almost three years behind their peers.


As part of myON’s mission to curb the summer slide, the company donated more than 5,000 books to every student in the Bay Area as part of the Super Bowl 50 celebration. myON has also been involved in large community reading initiatives with the Indiana Department of Education Hoosier Family of Readers and Hillsborough County Public Schools, which recently expanded its partnership with myON for the sixth year in a row.


About myON

myON, a business unit of Capstone, developed a personalized digital literacy platform that creates collaborative learning opportunities. myON expands the classroom for teachers and students by providing unlimited access to a collection of more than 10,000 enhanced digital books with multimedia supports, real-time assessments, and close reading tools. myON empowers students and teachers with real-time, actionable data—number and type of books opened and read, time spent reading, results of regular benchmark assessments, and more—based on embedded Lexile® assessments that measure student reading growth. With myON, every student experiences the benefits of personalized literacy instruction. For more information, please visit