Wed, 10 Mar 2004 14:19:14 GMT

The Libraries That Time (and Budgets) Forgot. Michael Winerip’s On Education: At Poor Schools, Time Stops on the Library’s Shelves is a deeply depressing story, and the sort of journalism we need don’t get nearly as often as we need. It seems that in poor neighborhoods — predominantly black neighborhoods — the schools have been starving the libraries. The books in the school library mostly date from before the schools were integrated. Not only do they lack the biographies students need for Black History Month, but they are innocent of four decades of modern technology, politics and literature. They don’t even have Harry Potter — the books that are credited with sparking a new generation of readers. What better example of our national shame of unequal class-based (which often in effect means race-based) public education? That said, I do have one tiny criticism of the article: do not make fun of Freddy the Pig…. []


this is a sad state of affairs. one thing that my h.s. library had going for it was the fact that several people donated books, not crap books, but new books in their field that they thought high school students could use. school libraries need to build communities. the other thing that my elementary school did was have library class, where we would go to the library and they would read, or we would get a book off the shelf and read, etc. this is conducive toward engaging students in learning about libraries.