Published Online: December 1, 2008
Published in Print: December 3, 2008, as School Libraries: An Ignored Indicator of Academic Success


School Libraries: An Ignored Indicator of Academic Success

Article Tools
  • PrintPrinter-Friendly
  • EmailEmail Article
  • ReprintReprints
  • CommentsComments

To the Editor:

In response to Eric Schaps’ Commentary "Missing in Action: The Non-Role of Research in Policy and Practice" (Nov. 5, 2008):

None of the author’s findings on the use and misuse of research in education comes as a surprise to school librarians. There have been numerous studies performed across the country that clearly demonstrate the importance of a school library program, one funded and staffed by a certified teacher-librarian. Many examples of such research can be found on the Web site of the Library Research Service, a unit of the Colorado State Library and the Colorado Department of Education.

A school library program integrated into the curriculum is the second-highest indicator of academic success (after the socioeconomic status of students’ families), yet schools struggling to make adequate yearly progress under the federal No Child Left Behind Act still cut the library. If we actually were to act on the research, every school would have a library with a certified librarian, a current print collection, online subscriptions, adequate technology, and flexible scheduling so that all children could have regular access.

There is something we can do about this: contact congressional representatives and ask them to support the Strengthening Kids’ Interest in Learning and Libraries, or SKILLS, Act, which would require a highly qualified school library media specialist in every school under the reauthorized No Child Left Behind law. As the research shows, it will make a big difference.

Lois Markiewicz
G.A. Stetson Middle School
West Chester, Pa.

Vol. 28, Issue 14, Page 32

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Login | Register
Ground Rules for Posting
We encourage lively debate, but please be respectful of others. Profanity and personal attacks are prohibited. By commenting, you are agreeing to abide by our user agreement.
All comments are public.

Back to Top Back to Top

Most Popular Stories