UNION, NJ - Every year Washington Elementary School challenges their students to read as many pages as they can.  And on Thursday students and staff celebrated "Reading is Magical", exceeding their goal of 2.5m pages with a magic show, DJ, Italian ice, and outside fun.

The Reading Challenge all started in 2010 with a new initiative introduced by Kim Morrison called The Million Page Reading Challenge, which grew into the 2,000,000 Page Reading Challenge, now the 2.5m Page Reading Challenge.

“The staff and students have collectively read 2.6 million pages this year, thereby surpassing our goal of 2.5 million pages,” said Washington School Principal Thomas Matthews.  “We all deserve a day like this to celebrate such an accomplishment.”

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“This year’s theme, ‘Reading is Magical’”, continued Matthews, “which couldn’t be better or more appropriate.  We had a magical year and are now having a magical day.  I want to thank Ms. Morrison for starting this challenge seven years ago.  I am so proud of all of us.”

“I started the Million Page Challenge seven years ago in my second grade class reading The Weird School Series by Dan Gutman,” said Morrison.  “Each year we read more than the previous year and went from one million, then two million and the last two years we have reached over two million five hundred thousand pages.  I am extremely proud of all the hard work both the students and all the staff continue to do over the past seven years.   I know how important reading is and when a child loves to read - anything is possible.”

At the beginning of the school year parents were asked to help the school achieve this goal by reading each night with their child to help instill a love of reading.