Tag Archives: School Libraries

Hoping to raise interest in books, public library opens school branch

“The kindergarten students sat in rows on a rainbow-colored carpet and listened to a story during a visit to their new school library. Then they did a reading cheer — “Read, Baby, Read!” — before they got to go “shopping” for books. Within a few minutes, the children at D.C. Prep Benning Public Charter School were lined up clutching books about Hot Wheels, princesses, pandas, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Curious George, Superman, and Pete the Cat, to name a few. The students usually select books in their classrooms, going through shelves or bins that are organized by reading level. But the Ward 7 school added 5,000 new books in March by opening a D.C. Public Library branch inside the school.” (via The Washington Post)

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Unequal shelves in D.C. school libraries benefit wealthier students

“Lafayette Elementary School, in upper Northwest Washington, has one of the largest library collections in the District’s public school system, with more than 28,000 books filling stacks on two floors. Drew Elementary, 12 miles away and east of the Anacostia River, has one of the city’s smallest inventories: 300 catalogued books lining shelves along two of the library’s walls. Reading and literacy are high priorities for the urban school district, as proficiency rates for its poorest students dwell below the averages for major cities. But the District dedicates no annual funding for school-library collections, instead relying on the largesse of parents or the kindness of strangers to stock its shelves through donations.” As a result, an unequal system has developed. (via The Washington Post)

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Millburn High School librarian juggles print, digital offerings

“With 30,000 print titles and 20,000 digital titles at the Millburn High School library, students and staff need some guidance.Enter high school librarian LaDawna Harrington.At Millburn High School, she has been guiding students and staff through the library’s vast collection, which she has worked to increase during her five years with the district.A part-time lecturer on library management at Rutgers’ School of Communication and Information, Harrington previously worked as a school librarian in Woodbridge Township and through the years has seen the library sciences grow by leaps and bounds since the days she had just a dialup modem in Woodbridge.” (via NorthJersey.com)

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LAUSD’s students need better libraries, not iPads

“Like Supt. John Deasy and others in the Los Angeles Unified School District, I am concerned about the educational civil rights of the district’s students. While the iPad-for-every-student controversy has gotten much media coverage lately, a long-term problem has gotten very little attention: the lack of equal access to a quality school library. A 19-month investigation by the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights concluded in 2011 that thousands of LAUSD students were being denied equal educational opportunities, which included libraries with sufficient books and staffing.” (via LA Times)

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West Philly libraries, key to student success, struggle to exist

“While Penn students might dread their weekend visits to Van Pelt Library, it is clear from the crowded cubicles and GSRs that the University would lose a valuable resource if its doors were closed. This is exactly the situation in which Philadelphia elementary school students find themselves. Because of extensive budget cuts, students are locked out of their school libraries without access to books or trained librarians. The School Reform Commission passed a “Doomsday Budget” in late May last year, in which $304 million was cut from Philadelphia schools for the 2013-14 fiscal year. As a result, about 3,800 school employees were laid off, 24 schools were closed and money to extracurricular programs was eliminated.” (via The Daily Pennsylvanian)

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School libraries urged to embrace the digital — cautiously

“Technology might make some parts of libraries obsolete — but librarians won’t be among them, panelists contended at this week’s annual Texas Library Association conference in San Antonio, which drew 7,200 attendees. As the popularity of electronic books continues to rise, schools are emerging as a dynamic area of how libraries adjust, they said. Educators and administrators, struggling to figure out how much to spend on their campus libraries amid state funding cuts, have reduced library staff and pondered the potential savings of buying digital books over printed ones. But concerns that students will increasingly be left with a self-service method of accessing books and research materials stem from the realization that today’s students are more tech-saavy than their predecessors.” (via San Antonio Express-News)

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Libraries of the Future: Where Trends Are Taking K-12 Public School Libraries

“Modern K-12 public libraries will offer intensely engaging learning environments to all students. How they will go about doing this is less certain but the principle trends are readily identified in various research efforts. The goal of this post is not absolutely to regurgitate the details of high-brow research, but rather to summarize the key points, to paint a picture of what the libraries of the future will look like and how they will support students, teachers, administrators, and even parents.” (via Huffington Post)

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AASL’s School Library Research examines social media policies and librarian staffing

“Two new research articles covering the topics of public school district social media policies and the correlation between librarian staffing levels and student learning are now available online as part of the American Association of School Librarians’ (AASL) peer-reviewed online journal, School Library Research (SLR).” (via ALA)

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Two [Philadelphia] shuttered school libraries to reopen

“Two school libraries, shuttered last month due to budget cuts, will reopen Tuesday after a donation from an anonymous donor. As The Inquirer reported last month, Central High and Masterman, two of the city’s most prestigious schools, closed their libraries because the district did not fund librarians. Principals of the two schools, magnets that take in top students from across the city, lamented the closures, and said the budget cuts had taken aim at the very heart of their institutions.” (via Philadelphia Inquirer)

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Weinberg Foundation Baltimore City school library project to double in size

“Community, education and political leaders gathered Monday at Arlington Elementary/Middle School to celebrate a partnership that is providing thousands of city students new libraries — an effort that could eventually transform learning spaces at two dozen schools. Arlington and the Historic Samuel Coleridge-Taylor Elementary are the fourth and fifth schools to get newly renovated libraries built by the Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation. The organization had pledged $5 million to build new libraries in high-poverty schools by 2015, but on Monday said it would double that contribution and bring improvements to 24 schools.” (via baltimoresun.com)

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