Orkney's MSP, Liam McArthur, has marked World Book Day's 25th anniversary today on a visit to Hope Community School.
World Book Day seeks to help more children, particularly those from disadvantaged backgrounds, read for pleasure which has been proven to be the single biggest indicator of a child’s future success – more than their family circumstances, their parents’ educational background or their income.
Each year World Book Day is marked in over 100 countries around the world with every schoolchild in Orkney given a £1 book token, which they can take to a local bookshop or supermarket to get their free World Book Day book.
Commenting after the visit, which saw Mr McArthur read stories with each of the classes and nursery, he said:
"It was a pleasure to be able to visit Hope Community School again to mark the 25th anniversary of World Book Day. I’ve been a fairly regular visitor over the years and it remains one of the highlights of the job!
"All the pupils, and staff, clearly had great fun dressing up as their favourite characters and were keen to talk about the books they were reading. That enthusiasm is so important as we know picking up the habit of reading from a young age is fundamental to improving future life prospects.
"Reading is a vital skill and can also be a good way to improve our mental health which is all the more important at a time we spend countless hours on our screens. World Book Day is a fantastic initiative that has been well supported by schools across the isles over the years.
"It is also an opportunity to pay tribute to the award-winning Orkney Library and Archive. Whether it be their mobile library van touring the isles, their much-acclaimed social media output or their wide range of books, archive material and creative events, they are an excellent example of what a public library can offer."