So the National Library has announced a fundamental change to its Services to Schools and it’s a terrible idea. The National Library is transforming its Services to Schools
Why is it a terrible idea? I’m glad you asked.
First up let’s look at what they are planning
Reading Engagement Lending Service
The emphasis of the new service will be on supporting students to read for pleasure, as a foundation for learning achievement. The content of loans will be quality fiction and high interest non-fiction resources to support reading for pleasure.
We’ll be supporting the whole school with a substantial loan that everyone can access, and you can keep the resources for a year. Loans will also no longer go to individual teachers and librarians.
So instead of sending teachers the books they need, they are going to send the school a whole lot of random books. Who at the school is going to monitor and store these books? Poor school librarians who already HAVE LIBRARIES FILLED WITH QUALITY FICTION AND HIGH INTEREST NON-FICTION RESOURCES! Libraries that are already faced with pressures to their shelving?
So no longer will a teacher be able to say “I need a class set of resources that help me look at beaches” which a school library can’t resource. Nope – instead they are going to try and supplant the work of the School libraries that already exists.
After a large outcry the National Library has pushed back the timeline on the changes
However the substance of the changes remain – which in effect prolongs the assault on school libraries and can only impact negatively on student outcomes.