- Associated Press - Thursday, October 16, 2014

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) - The program in Providence to boost the language skills of low-income children is being held up as a model for other municipalities nationwide.

Providence Mayor Angel Taveras (tuh-VEHR’-us) is scheduled to speak about “Providence Talks” in Washington, D.C. on Thursday, at the first White House conference on bridging a problem known as the word gap.

Studies show poorer children enter school having heard millions of fewer words than more affluent children. Experts say that can limit their future educational success and occupational opportunities.

Low-income children in Providence are given recorders to count the words they’re exposed to. Their parents are coached.

Taveras is scheduled to be featured in a discussion at the conference with the mayor of Kansas City, Missouri, to showcase the efforts in the cities to close the word gap.

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