A majority of schools received less funding for information resources last year than in 2008, according to the 2009 survey of school libraries by the Chicago-based American Association of School Libraries.
According to a report of the annual survey’s findings, the role of school libraries expanded modestly in 2009. They were open, on average, 1½ hours more per week in 2009 than in the previous year. While the number of teachers who are also school library media specialists didn’t grow in 2009, the report notes that there was an increase in the average number of hours the library media specialists worked by almost an hour per week.
The associations 2009 survey also includes a special focus on how school libraries serve English-language learners. It found that materials at 16 percent of school libraries in the United States are available in English only. Nine out of 10 respondents reported that less than 5 percent of their library collections are in a language other than English.
A version of this article appeared in the January 20, 2010 edition of Education Week as School Libraries