Book me in for some humiliation

23rd March 2001 at 00:00
American headteachers have been kissing llamas on the lips, dying their hair green and smooching with snakes to get their pupils to read a target number of books.

Others have agreed to recite rap songs dressed in baggy street clothes, and even to having themselves taped to the school wall.

Principal Deneen Zimmerman and her assistant at Russell primary school in Russell, Kentucky, had to dye their hair green after setting the 600 pupils a target of reading 1,000 books in nine weeks. "I thought we'd liven things up," said Ms Zimmerman.

The students nearly tripled the goal, finishing 2,630 books in all and copleting comprehension tests on every book they read.

Other American school administrators who agreed to personal humiliation in return for reading targets, included Carole Vann at Bonaire elementary school in Bonaire, Georgia, who kissed a West African ball python. Roger Lake, the principal of Brown elementary school in Spokane, Washington, kissed a llama - on the lips.

Principal Lee Wilson set an extremely ambitious goal for his students at Coloma elementary school in Coloma, Michigan. If they read 8,000 books he will let them tape him to the wall of the gymnasium. His students are reading furiously.


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