Free Lance-Star reporter Amy Umble covers Stafford County schools and other education issues

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Fredericksburg Head Start students snag new books

(L-R) Alia Durrani and Jasmine Lincoln (with teacher Keisha Swain), receive autographed copies of Betty Lewis Ellett's book "ABC's From The Rappahannock River, With Love" at the conclusion of the "3s Spring Program" ceremony at the Old Walker-Grant School. / Robert A. Martin

Summer is quickly approaching, and for Head Start students that could mean three months will little access to books. At Fredericksburg Head Start, the preschoolers have a well-equipped library where volunteers come in once a week to read to the students. At home, they’ll have a smaller, yet still powerful, collection of books. This year, Fredericksburg Head Start has given students each seven books to keep.

This morning, they gave a book that was extra special: Because this tome was written by a Head Start staff member. Betty Ellett has been the family literacy specialist for 20 years. This year, she published “ABCs from the Rappahannock River, With Love.” And today, each of the Head Start’s 3-year olds received their own signed copy. The 4-year olds will get a copy later in the month.

This volume is a follow-up to Ellett’s first book, “ABCs from Ghana, With Love,” a book that was inspired by two mission trips to the African country.