Providing Books and Other Print Materials for Classroom and School Libraries

Summary

IRA calls for increased funding for libraries. In many schools, libraries now have few books for each child; the condition of the books and the staffing of the libraries is deteriorating. This has serious implications for children’s literacy: Children who have access to books are more likely to read for enjoyment and information; children increase their reading skills by reading.

Libraries must be able to purchase a sufficient number of new books per student, and to replace older materials on an annual basis. Libraries should offer storybooks, novels, biographies, nonfiction texts, magazines, poetry, and a multitude of other types of materials to match the interests and reading abilities of the children they serve.

The Association advocates that teachers, librarians, and school administrators

  • Request appropriate numbers of books for classrooms, school libraries, and public libraries
  • Inform parents and policymakers of the importance of access to books
  • Remind policymakers of the need to allot funding for books

The Association further recommends that researchers

  • Conduct surveys to determine children’s access to books at home
  • Continue to study the benefits of access to books

PS 1039
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