Children’s laureate Chris Riddell has today posted an open letter to Education Secretary Justine Greening demanding more information and action regarding the significant closure of many UK school libraries.
Those of us working in schools, bookshops and local libraries know the impact a well stocked school library with a knowledgeable school librarian can have.
Promoting reading for fun should sit at the heart of every literacy programme! School libraries are of fundamental importance to children’s learning and development and without question ALL children should have access to FREE books!
Supported by the eight former children’s laureates, Riddell’s letter called on the Department of Education to act on the 2014 request made by the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Libraries to gather official statistics on school library closures. This has yet to be met and as such, statistics are hard to pin down.
We do know:
– There was a loss of 280 school librarians in England between 2012 and 2014
(Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (CILIP) and the all-party parliamentary group (APPG) on Libraries joint research, 2014)
– 54% of schools feel their library is not adequately funded
(Softlink 2015 UK school library survey)
Read Chris Riddell’s open letter in full below.
Read the full Guardian report HERE.