In a state with high levels of illiteracy, promoting reading is especially important. That’s why we welcome the approach of summer reading programs in public libraries across south Louisiana, thanks to the support of the State Library of Louisiana.

The State Library, which sets the theme for each year’s program and provides support to library systems across the state in staging summer reading activities, is promoting this year’s vacation months as the perfect time for youngsters to “Dig Into Reading.” A companion program aimed at teens, “Beneath the Surface,” should help adolescents build and retain their reading skills during their time away from school. There’s even a summer reading program for adults.

Reading is an important life skill, but it can also be one of life’s great pleasures. We’re glad that the State Library of Louisiana is promoting summer reading once again, and we encourage residents of all ages to stop by their neighborhood libraries this month and register for the 2013 summer reading program. This is a great chance for kids to keep reading between school sessions — and for grown-ups to get in the act, too.