NEW YORK/PRNEWSWIRE - Scholastic is proud to announce a new multi-book publishing program with civil rights hero and national treasure Ruby Bridges. These three new picture books will serve as Bridges and Scholastic's first collaboration since the 1999 publication of Through My Eyes, Bridges' critically acclaimed and Jane Addams Children's Book Award winning autobiography.
Said Ellie Berger, president and EVP of Scholastic Trade Publishing: "Ruby Bridges Day takes place on Nov. 14, 2020, and will mark 60 years since then six-year-old Ruby Bridges became the first Black student to attend an all-white elementary school. We are honored to commemorate this anniversary by announcing that we are once again teaming up with Ruby Bridges to launch a new publishing program. Ruby Bridges is a civil rights icon and inspiration, and her modern classic Through My Eyes remains a beloved gem on Scholastic's backlist. Each of the three new books are core to Ruby's mission of fighting bigotry, and align with Scholastic's commitment to equality – drawing on the remarkable framework that she has built over the last six decades. These titles will (re)introduce Ruby to kids today and be presented through her singular perspective, promising to serve young readers for generations to come."
Kicking off this slate of new publishing in spring 2022 will be I Am Ruby Bridges, a bold and beautifully illustrated book introducing a new generation of readers to this remarkable civil rights pioneer. A companion to Through My Eyes arriving in spring 2023, Dear Ruby Bridges: Letters from Kids Speaking up for a Better World will be comprised of letters from kids that Bridges has received over the years. 2023 will also see the publication of A Talk with My Teacher, based on the relationship between Bridges and Barbara Henry, her first grade teacher.
"I am very happy that Scholastic and I are continuing our 25-year journey together," Bridges noted. "In the hundreds of classrooms I have spoken in across this country, I've had the unique opportunity to see how a book can both educate and inspire our youngest minds. I often say that if we are going to make lasting change, it has to come from our young people. I look forward to bringing these new titles into the Scholastic portfolio as they believe like I do in the transformative power of storytelling."
"Ruby Bridges is a powerful storyteller whose civil rights legacy invites important conversations among children and adults," added Andrea Davis Pinkney, vice president and executive editor at Scholastic. "Her books continue to shine a vital light on the children's book landscape, bringing our shared mission of diversity and inclusion into sharp focus. Like all of her books, these new offerings will provide readers with the tools they need to speak with the kids in their lives about fostering racial harmony for people everywhere."
Additional Scholastic books about the extraordinary life of Ruby Bridges include Scholastic Reader title Ruby Bridges Goes to School: My True Story by Ruby Bridges and picture book The Story of Ruby Bridges by Robert Coles and George Ford (which was rereleased in fall 2020 in a special anniversary edition).
In memory of her mother, Lucille Bridges, who died on Nov.10, 2020, Ruby Bridges will be joined by Scholastic in establishing the Lucille Bridges Trust, which will support youth who are inspired to continue the legacy of activism.
ABOUT RUBY BRIDGES
Ruby Bridges is a civil rights activist who, at age 6, was the ﬁrst Black student to integrate an all-white elementary school in New Orleans. She was born in Mississippi in 1954, the same year the United States Supreme Court handed down its landmark decision ordering the integration of public schools. Her family later moved to New Orleans, where on Nov. 14, 1960, Bridges began attending William Frantz Elementary School, single-handedly initiating the desegregation of public education in New Orleans. Her walk to the front door of the school was immortalized in Norman Rockwell's painting The Problem We All Live With, in Robert Coles' book The Story of Ruby Bridges, and in the Disney movie Ruby Bridges.
She established the Ruby Bridges Foundation to provide leadership training programs that inspire youth and community leaders to embrace and value the richness of diversity. Bridges is the recipient of numerous awards, including the NAACP Martin Luther King Award, the Presidential Citizens Medal, and honorary doctorate degrees from Connecticut College, College of New Rochelle, Columbia University Teachers College, and Tulane University. Bridges is also the author of This Is Your Time.