"And we've got probably several million students who will get a high school diploma and cannot read it," says Davidson, who created the "Bookcase for Every Child" project.
This sad statistic and the desire to help Faulkner County pre-schoolers learn to read spawned Davidson's project.
"Being a retired teacher, I see the need for books to be placed in homes," says Helen Atkinson.
Since Jim started the project in 2005, 250 Head Start children have received bookcases and a starter set of children's books.
"These are young children, these are just three and four year-olds, but they have their own bookcases and they can check out books from the Head Start center," says Phyliss Fry with CAPCA/Operation: Head Start.
Volunteer carpenters build the bookcases with materials bought with funds raised at an annual banquet and from other private sources.
"We have a wonderful supporter here in town who has a cabinet shop that loans us his spray equipment, and so we go and we stain them and varnish them and put the name plates on them," Davidson says.
A community-wide drive amassed more then 3,000 "gently used" children's books, which are sorted by members of the Faulkner County Retired Teachers' Association.
State Representative Linda Tyler is an avid backer. "You know, one of the things that I know is that Jim's focused on and those of us who work with him are focused on is the joy of reading, how joyful it is to read and know that we're gonna help one child at a time do that," she says.
National statistics say that four out of every 10 students in America will drop out, but not if Jim Davidson can help it.
His goal is to take the bookcase to every child statewide, then nationwide.
At least three more Arkansas communities are in the process of starting the project.
Click here for more information on the "Bookcase for Every Child" project.