Skip to comments.Libraries fading as school budget crisis deepens
Posted on 06/24/2010 10:46:40 AM PDT by JoeProBono
BELLEVUE, Wash. (AP) -- Students who wished their school librarians a nice summer on the last day of school may be surprised this fall when they're no longer around to recommend a good book or help with homework.
As the school budget crisis deepens, administrators across the nation have started to view school libraries as luxuries that can be axed rather than places where kids learn to love reading and do research.....
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I hope the local libraries survive. I just started using mine again for the first time since I was a child . . . to get books for my child : )
Getting a book every couple weeks for myself as well.
So schools always target the useful stuff first.
The Administrators and Assisant administrators and all the people at the top will be the LAST to lose their jobs- but who will they be the boss of?
Keep the librarians. Ax the administrators.
Things have changed a lot since I was in schoo. The English teacher had the library in her room and she took care of it. Of course it wasnt much of a library.
With all the Computers in schools now is a library really a necessity? Reference’s are pretty easy to find in Computers.
Do they still have books on how to make buggy whips?
Digital information is great until the power goes out or the censors kick in. A basic hard copy of human knowledge is fundamental IMO.
The Administrators and Assistant administrators and all the people at the top will be the LAST to lose their jobs- but who will they be the boss of?
Does it really matter?. Most school districts are extremely 'top heavy'. Many administrators do not really supervise others now. This condition can be attributable to the continued social/economic engineering that is so prevalent in our schools' curriculum nowadays.
I would warrant that so many school administrators would just be satisfied with continued salary/benefits/pensions.
If you are implying that books are passe or that libraries are, I disagree.
Libraries are where people can sit and read and contemplate--and think. Online sources by their very nature are helping lower our patience with reading long, detailed works.
We are getting dumber and dumber, and the rise of the Internet, while providing ample sources of factoids and gotcha! journalism, is training our young people to be sheep. The inability to sit and read and pause to think is not a good thing.
Libararians are often leftist censors. You won't find any books on the shelves that offend any politically correct fashions during the past 100 years.
Local churches could start a library and staff it with decent books and no-porn computers. Help with homework, give the gospel, de-program.
Our librarians are media specialists (they also take care of the computers).
Our librarians are media specialists (they also take care of the computers).
I found a few in my high school library that might defy that description. I’m nowhere near a senior citizen in chronological age. The school is in a liberal stronghold.
I live by a large libarary. There are 3 union staffers for every patron, partly to monitor for pedophiles. My yearly property taxes are 4% of property value and rising twice the rate of inflation. I love books but no thanks.
The dumber part is because of unions destroying the education industry. People leveraging the internet are much smarter than they would be otherwise. Give an average person 2 extra hours and an internet connection and they could ace the SAT.
What real value do we get from public, tax-supported libraries? IMHO, I think the lending of books would be better performed by the private sector instead of the current model of soft socialism.
Between Amazon and Internet, my family has not used a library. Amazon has some great book for children and of course the internet is incredible. As newspapers become extinct so will libraries as they should be. They cost too much money and are not needed any longer. I am sorry that you will miss out on the library but we need to cut them as they are too expensive for what they offer or even better, who uses them.
That's because no leftist has complained yet. Put in a complaint and any conservative books will disappear.
The schools already have the libraries, they already have the books.
If they simply don’t buy new books for a year, and don’t spend money repairing others that break, they will still have libraries.
And if they get rid of librarians, and have teachers or other staff monitor the libraries, they’ll still have libraries.
SO this “libraries going away in schools” doesn’t really make sense.
You certainly will in my library. Some of the leftist stuff is there, but there is a good selection of truth as well — enough so that one history teacher complained about all the conservative materials we have. :)
OTOH, I will have to change my ID from Library Lady at the end of this month. Retirement approaches.
I think I understand your point. This simple fact is it takes more find and remove a book than it does to click the mouse a few times. Removing books gives the leftist libs that essentially run this Nation’s school system free reign to rewrite history IMO. I like books that I cannot stand. You seem to be on the side of burning them...
As for the dichotomy of libraries or computers, you are aware that for many rural communities the only computers with public access are the libraries?
When I saw how heavy libraries were pushing computers that’s when I first started to think that they could be done away with.
If all you are doing is teaching people how to use computers, then you aren’t much of a library anymore.
Our library is usually buzzing with users, many more than the staff. Lots there for computer use, job search, and movies as well as books.
Kids and the elderly seem to use the public libraries the most. People without a lot of excess money maybe.
teachers already have hefty enough salaries and benefits....and THAT is the problem.....everything must be destroyed to keep the teachers the fat and happy in they’re part time work...
I respectfully disagree.
Public teachers still complain about salary, but they are doing better than most of us that are sending our kids to their schools now . . . by far imo. Avg. salaries have to be in the 40’s and I’m probably low balling that . . . I have heard some teachers that are making into the 80,000 range, plus 100% medical type benefits, retirement, etc., stuff no one else gets anymore.. And it’s 9 months work a year.
For every teacher you see, there are multiple pencil pushers who make a great deal more. When asked what they do the average response is a snore.
Absolutely not true--libraries have been around that contain all the information needed to ace any test, yet the colleges don't graduate classes full of straight A students. The students that inspired my original comment had complete access to the Internet for their final reports and came up with sub-par work.
Acing one test would mean we graduated people who did just that--aced ONE test. Who would you rather operate on you, or fix your car or build your house--people who aced a test using the Internet, or people who had to go through the hard work that test ended up verifying?
This "The unions, the unions!" stuff is a separate issue. People who "leverage the Internet" are not smarter than they would be otherwise--being able to pick out things online doesn't mean one's smart, just that they can use the Internet. Nothing more.
I can think of many other school activities more useless than the libary!
I have loved libraries since I was a small child...Mom would practically have to drag me out of the one we lived down the street from about 30 years ago.
Today, my kids love making a trip to the library, and since we are on a tight budget (3 kids in Catholic school on one income), it’s a great way for us to be informed and entertained without breaking the bank. My favorite thing to do is to reserve books from home online and pick them up at the library—especially since I usually have a toddler in tow and he is not quite ready for the library yet. It’s become such a habit that they don’t even need to know my name when I come in—they just head to the shelf to get my reserved materials!
Our library is enormous and well-stocked with all kind of books with a number of views represented. I can get Glenn Beck’s latest just as easy as anything, or any other conservative selection. Twice a year, there is a used book sale at the library that I eagerly await. I have found some wonderful books and if they are not so wonderful, I’m not out much money for them.
Another thing I have noticed is how clean and orderly things are...no homeless hanging out harassing people, the librarians enforce good behavior from the kids, and the staff are more than helpful. Plus they just put in a nice new coffee shop that gives me another excuse to run away from home for a while :)
I should have been a librarian, LOL. Hey, I finally figured out what I want to be when I grow up!
I’m with you. I would walk to the local library when I was in late elementary years and middle school. 10’s if not hundreds of times. My daughter got her own card a few months ago at 5 years old, which made her feel very grown up. She’s developed an interest in Egyptian history and we’ve checked out maybe 10 books on Egypt so far. No way we would have bought that many for her; 1 a week, week after week. And Benjamin Franklin I think started the public libraries in the US . . . can’t have a better pedigree than that.
I just read a book on Ben Franklin—from the library of course! It was a book recommended on Beck’s website. Not a bad read.
My daughter just got her first card too last year, when she turned five (she just turned 6 last week, she is sure to let everyone know, LOL). She is enrolled in the summer reading program-she’s read 15 books since the beginning of the month. Or I should say, she’s read some of them and I’ve read some to her. She set a goal of 25 books for the summer—I think she’ll have it cleared by the 4th!
My three oldest love to read (child #4 turns 3 in a few months). My oldest—12—does an activity called Battle of the Books at school. They read a list of about 14 books over the school year. The students are formed into teams of 5-6 kids and they answer questions about the books. In the spring, all the Catholic schools in Arkansas send their best team to the state finals in Conway. Our kids’ school had 11 teams last year—the most in Arkansas! They have placed in the top five 2 of the 4 years the competition has existed. It’s a great program and has my daughter reading a great mix of classic books and more contemporary stuff. Her brother wants to do it when he hits fourth grade in another year.
Isn’t life wonderful? Praise God.
I get books, magazines and DVDs from my local public library all the time. It's just two blocks away and surrounded by a nice park. I really enjoy it.
When I was a kid the school libraries doubled as community public libraries and anyone could use them. Sometime in the early 90s, the community grew anxious over the ease at which anyone could freely wander around the halls of a school and restricted library use to only students while funding a neighborhood public library off school grounds that everyone could use.
I read the AP story. AP has no shame. It’s as left-wing and dishonest as the NEA.
So it plays along with the PR spin. If they said, “Budget cuts mean we have to fire administrators,” people would say, “Good news.”
The story mentions cutting librarians so that class size won’t have to be increased. As if these are only options anybody could think of.
Thanks JoeProBono. E-books ping, Pages digest header.
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Libraries as we know them are an endangered species. With the advent of all gadgets electronic, they are an expensive space to maintain. Methinks in the future, if you want to read a book (paper version) you will have to go to the museum.
I am of conflicted opinions. I deeply feel that libraries as we have known them must be preserved. I love books. I like to hold a book while I read. There is something aesthetic to having a book at your fingertips. Children learning to read do better with multi-sensory approach, including holding a book and pointing to words as they go.
Then again, I love the concept of the e-readers like Kindle, Nook, and yes, even the iPad. The idea that I can carry my entire library electronically on a handheld device is beyond awesome. Having virtual libraries in schools is a great idea. It saves space, time, and money in the long run.
In the future, as in the past, owning books will be a sign of wealth. Currently, paperbacks are cheap. Hardbacks are not so cheap, but still affordable. However, with all the ‘green’ery going on, I would be surprised if printed books did not become collectors’ items and a relic of the past. Our society is well on its way already to becoming paperless. Why not include the school library?
Reality imitating fiction... Star Trek here we come.
There is about $33 million left in the “General Fund.” Out of the 60 programs funded there, 30 or more are ones mandated by the state and feds over which there is no discretion. Most of these have no employees attached to them - things like paying for Court-appointed attorneys, General Assistance, indigent burial.
The public libraries are in the remaining 30 with the sheriff, District Attorney, Public Defender, Auditor, Tax Collector, Assessor, Clerk -etc. There just wasn't enough money to cover basic functions of public safety and government. Libraries are a non-mandated, non-essential program. If the public wants them in these lean times, they need to fund them with a special property assessment. I am not saying they aren't of great value, they are just secondary in basic government function to peace and safety.
In California, the role of the school library is just changing. It’s the information center, being the “heart” of electronic info as well as the traditional library stuff.
Nine months...no longer. Not only are actual school years longer, teachers also have to continue their education as long as they teach. This is done in the summer—and is usually about two weeks.
AND...Teachers are unemployed—and unpaid—for their summer vacations.
It’s much more than just “teaching computers.” PLUS...there is still the traditional librarian job to be done.
It is anticipated that Kindel-type readers will soon be issued to each student, and the library will still be the center of related logistics.
Kindel-esque tools will become the students’ “backpacks.”