Libraries = Strong Communities

Literacy | 04/09/2019

Eura Chang
State Operations Coordinator

April 7-13, 2019 is National Library Week! We are so proud to celebrate libraries and the critical role they play in our community.

When we saw that this year’s theme was “Libraries = Strong Communities”, we immediately thought of the Schmitt Elementary School library. After budget cuts led to the closure of Schmitt’s school library in 2018, parent volunteers came together to reopen it with the help of donations and local partners. The determination of the community to give kids access to books is a perfect testament to how even small libraries can make a big impact. You can learn more here.

Now that a year has passed since the re-opening of Schmitt’s library, we checked back in with Stand parent leader, Jeannie Nelson, to learn more about its effects on the school and community.

Jeannie told us that since the library has re-opened, kids have checked out 900 printed books and 15,000 e-books. In addition, she pointed out that, “Teachers are really excited to have the resources to get more books for research projects.” Parents are also often found in the library picking out books with their children.

When DPS teachers went on strike this past February, parent volunteers delivered books from the library to the classrooms for story time. Their enthusiasm impressed Jeannie, “So many of the students were so excited and kept asking for more books!”

We asked Jeannie if she’d learned anything in the last year and she quickly responded, “I’ve learned that kids love books. Give them easy access and they’ll go nuts!”

We can’t wait to see how the Schmitt library continues to make a positive impact on students and families! We’re also so grateful for the libraries out there, big and small, that promote learning and literacy in their communities. Read more about how to celebrate National Library Week here.

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