START A PETITION 25,136,189 members: the world's largest community for good
START A PETITION
x
745,999 people care about Education

Want Better Reading Scores? Hire a Full-Time Librarian

Want Better Reading Scores? Hire a Full-Time Librarian

 

The ever-present budget cuts and faculty reductions that plague schools across the country have sparked questions about which services and staff members are crucial for students to receive an adequate education. New research from Library Research Service does a lot to answer these questions with evidence that one particular staff position drives up reading skills in students of all ages: the full-time librarian.

“There is a positive and statistically significant relationship between advanced reading levels and endorsed librarian staffing trends,” according to the report.

The study analyzed data from the Colorado Student Assessment Program to determine reading skills and involved students in grades three through ten. According to an article in School Library Journal, 45 percent of students who attended schools with librarians tended to increase their test scores over the course of a school year, compared to just 29 percent of students who had never had a school librarian on campus.

These findings debunk the myth that parent volunteers or library aides can replace a full-time, professionally trained school librarian. They simply don’t have the skills or time to adequately explain research methods, answer library-related questions or foster a love of reading in students as well as a librarian can. And libraries today don’t just house books: librarians now must be experts in all kinds of digital media, including online databases, resources and multi-media presentation formats.

Additionally, usage of both public and school libraries is rising, making it even more crucial for school districts to retain or hire qualified librarians. I think the presence of a librarian is most important in elementary schools, where basic reading skills are built. If a student doesn’t learn to read well in high school, he or she faces immense challenges farther down the road.

I hate to think of any school programs being cut, because each facet of education — whether it is science, math, history, art or music–is so important for students. But if budgets are really coming down to the wire, parents and community members need to speak up for the well-being of the students: keep the librarians.

 

Related Stories:

Survey Shows Teacher Satisfaction Plummeting

Library Usage Up As Cities Slash Budgets

Romney: Can’t Afford College? Not His Problem

 

Read more: , , , , , ,

Photo from jeshua.nace via flickr

quick poll

vote now!

Loading poll...

have you shared this story yet?

some of the best people we know are doing it

27 comments

+ add your own
12:50PM PDT on Mar 16, 2012

Everybody is trying all these crazy nutbar ideas to make schools work and kids learn, and it is really pretty simple. Fund the schools. Make sure they have librarians, aides, enough teacher to keep class size nice and low. That's all it takes.

6:21PM PDT on Mar 14, 2012

This finding was replicated albeit some years ago in NY state by their Board of Regents. They looked at all sorts of things too like what the kids ate for lunch, the income of the parents, the number of students per class, the education of the teachers, etc., etc. They concluded the same thing and that is a functioning library staffed by a librarian determines reading scores.

3:29PM PDT on Mar 14, 2012

I don't really agree just because we had those when I was younger and people still managed to get low reading marks :/

3:10PM PDT on Mar 14, 2012

not surprised....librarians, like teachers, under-appreciated,under-paid, over-worked....love reading, love libraries, good for the mind.....

2:06PM PDT on Mar 14, 2012

I can still remember getting my first library card at 7. Now I have more books in my private library than my home town started with. Reading has entertained me, gotten me through school and save my life and a couple of my friends too.

2:00PM PDT on Mar 14, 2012

All of my life I have been a reader, and have used public libraries regularly. Our school library was an excellent one, and still is. Without a trained librarian there would be a collection of books and other media, but no one to teach people just how to use it. Helping the students know how to learn well is one of the purposes of the school library. And the public library is the permanent on-going school for the rest of your life.

12:40PM PDT on Mar 14, 2012

Sharing this with a friend who is a school librarian. Thanks

11:53AM PDT on Mar 14, 2012

Books are the KEY to learning!

8:44AM PDT on Mar 14, 2012

As a Librarian, I love this!

8:42AM PDT on Mar 14, 2012

As a Librarian, I love this!

add your comment



Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

Care2 - Be Extraordinary - Start a Care2 Petition
ads keep care2 free
CONTACT THE EDITORS

Recent Comments from Causes

If the police can't or won't deal seriously with rape on campus than the University must. Those who are…

Our cat Simba doesn't cheat although he does visit a neighbour on occasions - but mostly he is a home…

ads keep care2 free



Select names from your address book   |   Help
   

We hate spam. We do not sell or share the email addresses you provide.