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Aylsham High School’s Abbie wins inaugural Pupil Library Assistant Award

Teenage pupil Abbie Craske from Aylsham High School in Norfolk has been named Pupil Library Assistant of the Year, from a shortlist of seven committed young library lovers who assist in their school libraries. The new national award is made jointly by the CILIP School Library Group and the School Library Association.

Each of the seven shortlisted pupils raises the profile of the school library in various ways, including helping and supporting other pupils, building engagement and bringing fresh ideas to support reading and literacy at their schools.

Abbie was presented with the award by Charlie Higson and takes home prizes including a specially commissioned artwork designed by multi-award winning Chris Riddell. She said:

In the beginning the school library was my escape from life, now it enhances my life, and it is a privilege to give something back to the place I love.”

Presenting the award, author, writer and actor Charlie Higson paid tribute to the work of librarians calling them “irreplaceable”, and said:

“Librarians share the love and magic of books and when pupils get involved in spreading that excitement, that is incredible; at a time when there are so many competing distractions for their time and attention.”

Prizes and support for the initiative were sponsored by leading children’s publishers Hachette, Macmillan and Puffin, specialist children’s book suppliers Peters Books and Furniture; and by Authors Aloud UK, a company specialising in organising author visits into schools and libraries. Entries were judged by a panel of leading figures from the children’s book world and school library community.

Open to pupils who assist in school libraries across the UK, the award recognises the impact of their work on their school and its library and equally the value of the experience to the children’s lives.

Winner:

Abbie Craske -  Aylsham High School, Norfolk

Finalists:

Morgan Boswell - Wilsthorpe Community School, Nottingham
Olivia Bowes - Antrim Grammar School, Antrim, NI
Megan Gardner -  King James’s School, Huddersfield, W Yorks
Francesca Hannay - Derby High School, Derby
Jessica Ince-  Heritage High School, Clowne, Derbyshire
James Kearney- The King’s School, Grantham, Lincolnshire

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