MTA Red Sox Reading Game recognizes educators during American Education Week

In celebration of American Education Week, the Massachusetts Teachers Association  brought Wally the Green Monster, the Red Sox’ mascot, to public schools in Haverhill and Revere. Wally was on hand to thank educators for the hard work they do and recognize two students who are grand prize winners in the MTA Red Sox Reading Game.

“American Education Week is a nice time to show appreciation for the hard work that our teachers and education support professionals do every day in classrooms across the state,” MTA President Anne Wass said. “I’m so proud of the work educators do – and of the time and energy they devote to making a difference in the lives of their students.”

The MTA Red Sox Reading Game links two classic summer pastimes: baseball and books. Today, Josue Rodriguez, a student at the Dr. Paul Nettle Middle School in Haverhill, and Naiomi Leon, who attends the Susan B. Anthony Middle School in Revere, received baseballs autographed by Red Sox catcher Jason Varitek and $100 Borders gift cards.

Also this week, the MTA is awarding $20 Borders gift cards to 75 teachers and education support professionals throughout the state.

American Education Week began in 1921 as a way to generate support for public education. This year’s theme, Great Public Schools: A Basic Right and Our Responsibility, highlights the importance of bringing together educators, school staff, parents, students and communities to create great public schools.

Since 1987, Education Support Professionals Day has been observed on the Wednesday of American Education Week as a special way to honor the contributions of school support staff. Today is ESP Day.

The Reading Matters partnership between the MTA and the Red Sox is designed to promote literacy and student achievement. The gift card winners were selected from reading game entries submitted last spring and summer. To participate in the contest, students pledged to read nine books over the summer – one for each position on the baseball field.

To find out more about American Education Week, visit or contact your local public school. To find out more about the Red Sox Reading Game, log on to