Re. below, I thought this would be of interest to many.
SCHOOL LIBRARIES STILL BUILD SKILLS
Yet another research study has confirmed the link between
the quality of school libraries and student achievement.
Professor Donna Baumbach of the University of Central
Florida analyzed library staffing, collections, and
Internet access in more than 1700 media centers across the
state. The results showed that well-staffed, well-stocked
libraries increased elementary reading scores by 9 percent,
middle-school scores by 3 percent, and high school scores
by 22 percent.
Even better results came when certified media specialists
(rather than teachers or clerks) staffed the library. There
was a direct correlation between the amount of time a
library was professionally staffed and the number of
students in the school who read at grade level; test scores
were more than 20 percent higher in elementary schools with
a full-time professional librarian and assistant than in
schools with only part-time staff.
All libraries with certified media specialists also had
more books per student, more subscriptions to newspapers
and periodicals, more computers per student, more student
visitation, and higher circulation.
For more highlights from the study:
Meanwhile, a recent article in the San Francisco Chronicle
criticizes increasing spending on technology in schools
when other programs such as art, music, shop and physical
education are being cut back or eliminated.
Todd Oppenheimer, the author of a book critical of
computers in classrooms, argues that "technology is dumbing
down the academic experience, corrupting schools'
financial integrity, cheating the poor, fooling people
about the job skills youngsters need for the future and
furthering the illusions of state and federal education
According to Oppenheimer, computers (especially in the
lower grades) add little to the educational experience and
have many more drawbacks than advantages.
To read the full text of the article:
Leo J. Deveau, B.A., M.Ed., MLIS
Research and Communications
Post-Secondary Educational Support Services
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