One of the four goals of the Petal Education Foundation
is to support early childhood in the Petal School District.
Petal Excel By 5
Excel By 5 is a community-based certification designed to improve a child’s overall well-being by age five. The first-of-its-kind in the United States, this program emphasizes the important roles communities play in educating their children during their most formative years - from birth to age five.
In 2007, Petal became Mississippi’s first certified Excel By 5 community, serving as a model for other communities through innovative programs and partnerships.
Donations to support Petal Excel By 5 can be made through the Petal Education Foundation.
Dolly Parton Imagination Library
Members of the Rotary Club of Petal initiated the Dolly Parton Imagination Library Project because its focus on literacy and because this program was so closely aligned with the City of Petal’s Excel By 5 purpose; to support families in their efforts to provide optimum nurturing and learning experiences for babies and preschoolers.
The Dolly Parton Imagination Library began in Petal, Mississippi in May 2009.
The Dolly Parton Imagination Library is a program set up for enrolled babies and preschoolers to receive one book each month from the child’s first month after birth until their 5th birthday for a total of 60 books. The books are sent to the home address at no cost, FREE, to the parents or child.
Country music star, Dolly Parton, grew up in a home where there were there were no books and with parents who could not read. She understands that for the natural progression of language to occur and to be able to read as a kindergartner and/or first grader, age appropriate books should be shared with babies and preschoolers...preferably in the home, cuddled in the lap of a parent or other family members. Dolly values the ability to read and wanted to make it possible, first in her home area of Sevier County, Tennessee by funding a program that mailed an age appropriate book each month to every preschooler in her home county.
The program was so successful, a foundation was set up and other cities wanted to participate. Petal is one such city. We are among the first in Mississippi to participate in this program. .
The program is funded totally by the generosity of interested citizens, donations from civic clubs, and cooperation grants. A brochure is attached with directions as to how to contribute to this most worthwhile program. By donating just $29.00, a child would receive free books for one year.
Every tax-deductible donation is appreciated. Make checks payable to the Petal Education Foundation at any time to help support the Imagination Library. Please know….only families that live in Petal are eligible for this program