Impact of School Libraries

The benefits of having a funded and staffed school library have been proven across the world, with school libraries having a positive impact upon attitude, well-being, academic outcomes and improved literacy.

Just a few of these studies are available below; some full reports, summaries and infographics. 

If you go into a school that has a brilliant librarian, you really notice the difference. Books become central to the school.


Charlie Higson speaking to Anita Singh

The visibility and availability of books and other reading materials are key components of a reading culture at home, in schools and throughout society. Children growing up in homes with more books develop better reading skills, no matter what their social background. Schools should provide a wide range of reading materials that attracts boys and girls of all ages and interests. School and public libraries can play a significant role in helping and inspiring pupils to find reading material that they can relate to.


Final report of the EU High Level Group of experts on Literacy, EU High Level Group of Experts on Literacy

Books should be visible, available and used not only at home, but in society at large. In an age where small bookshops are disappearing from the urban landscape due to competition from online retailers, we need to find new, creative ways of keeping books in community life. More than ever, libraries have a key role in making books and stories available to everyone, while also making reading more visible.


Final report of the EU High Level Group of experts on Literacy, EU High Level Group of Experts on Literacy

I realise I’m talking to converts here, but I have to tell you that the difference a qualified librarian makes to a primary school is simply transformational


David Tilling, Head Teacher of Peasedown St John Primary School, Bath, at the SLYA/SLA LDA Awards Event

Visiting a good library should be like going to eat in a great restaurant. You can have whatever you want - even if you don't like it when you try it - and the librarian is like the chef, telling you what's good on the menu. Without a central library, even the best schools run the risk of providing a somewhat bland and impoverished reading diet


Fiona Evans, Education Consultant at the Reading Agency, Teach Reading and Writing

The school library was both my refuge and my inspiration. I think it's very dangerous for someone like me to try and tell teachers what to do in order to improve reading and writing; it's arrogance to assume that  simply because you have sold lots of books , you know it all. However, if I am asked what schools need  in order to facilitate literacy, I can answer without hesitation: a well-stocked library and a full-time, trained librarian with the necessary resources and funds to ensure that library flourishes. The library should be the battery at the heart of every school. Everything begins there - communication, confidence, the acquisition of cultural references and the exploration of our hinterland. It's where you start to develop empathy and an understanding of the human condition - who you are, where you are, and how you got there


Anthony Horowitz, Author, Teach Reading and Writing

Demonstrating Impact

Showing the impact you have is important to ensure the best funding and training opportunities. Everyone in a school (and really an organisation) needs to show they are contributing to the overall aims and school libraries are no different. The things you want to show will vary depending on your context, but can include things like book loans, participation in clubs and activities or feedback from pupils and staff.

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