Universities redesign libraries for the 21st century: fewer books, more space

“UC Berkeley’s newly remodeled undergraduate library is modern and sleek, with its top two floors featuring low-slung couches, a futuristic nap pod, and meeting spaces with glass walls made to be written on and colorful furniture meant to be moved. The library has even dropped its rules against bringing in food and drinks on those floors. That’s because they no longer contain any books, which could be damaged or stained. California’s oldest university has removed 135,000 books from Moffitt Library, shipping most to other locations, to create more space for students to study, recharge and collaborate on group projects — a staple of college work today.” (via LA Times)

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National Poetry Month: New Recordings Uploaded to Recorded Poetry and Literature Archive

“In honor of National Poetry Month, the center has digitized and uploaded 50 new recordings to its online Archive of Recorded Poetry and Literature. Among the additions are recordings by poets laureate Daniel Hoffman, Philip Levine, Rita Dove, Maxine Kumin, Josephine Jacobsen, William Stafford, Anthony Hecht, Robert Pinsky and Gwendolyn Brooks.” (via Library of Congress Blog)

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National Library of Wales to digitise sound recordings

“The National Library of Wales in Aberystwyth has become part of a new sound archive network.It will become one of 10 “sound preservation centres” that will work with the British Library to protect rare and unique recordings as part of a £18.8m project. In Wales alone, 5,000 items will be digitised. Lona Mason, visual images librarian at the library, said it was “a race against time” to save the recordings.” (via BBC News)

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Are school libraries headed toward extinction? LAUSD principals are choosing other ways to spend limited budgets, but some board members want to change that

“Five more LA Unified high schools may divert their funding for teacher librarians this fall as principals decide to spend their budgets on other pressing needs, meaning 15 of the 84 high school libraries would not be fully staffed. The state’s Local Control Funding Formula allows more autonomy for district schools, and library staffing is among the discretionary items. But at an April committee meeting, three school board members indicated they would like to see library positions required at schools. If they enlist a fourth board member, they could make the positions required at schools, even though principals have repeatedly indicated they need autonomy over their budgets.” (via LA School Report)

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Facing big budget cuts, librarians to get the boot from almost a dozen Dallas ISD schools

“Almost a dozen Dallas schools will soon no longer have a librarian. Among them are four high schools — Roosevelt, Lincoln, A. Maceo Smith New Tech and Gilliam Collegiate Academy. So are three middle schools in the district’s ACE turnaround program: Edison, Rusk and Zumwalt. School officials say it’s the result of drastic budget cuts as the district scrapes around to make up for a $60 million shortfall next year. The changes will save $2 million.” (via Dallas News)

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