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Fall 2003, Keith Curry Lance Conducts Study of School Libraries in Illinois. 657 Schools of all grade levels, enrollment ranges, and regions participated.

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Presentation on theme: "Fall 2003, Keith Curry Lance Conducts Study of School Libraries in Illinois. 657 Schools of all grade levels, enrollment ranges, and regions participated."— Presentation transcript:

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2 Fall 2003, Keith Curry Lance Conducts Study of School Libraries in Illinois. 657 Schools of all grade levels, enrollment ranges, and regions participated.

3 A range of data was collected: –Hours of operation. –Staff and their activities. –The libraries collection and educational technology. –Total library expenditures. –Several types of library usage.

4 Statistical analyses identified numerous positive and statistically significant relationships between various dimensions of school libraries and standardized testing results, such as ISAT (fifth and eighth grade reading and writing), PSAE (eleventh grade reading), and ACT (eleventh grade reading).

5 Further analysis was used to rule out school and community conditions: –Household income. –Per pupil spending. –Teacher-pupil ratio. –Students race/ethnicity.

6 Flexible Scheduling - enabling teachers and students to work with the librarian and other staff and to use the library as a classroom and a study space as needed.

7 Where elementary schools offered more flexible scheduling, 5th graders scored 10% higher on ISAT reading tests and 11% higher on ISAT writing tests. Where high schools offered more flexible scheduling, 11th graders averaged more than 6% higher on ACT scores. Flexible schedulings impact holds true regardless of per pupil spending, teacher- pupil ration, and students race/ethnicity.

8 School Library Staff and Their Activities - the principle assets of a strong school library program are those who staff it, both professional and support staff.

9 Higher library staffing levels (more than 30 hrs/week for elementary/middle and more than 40 hrs/week for high school) account for improved reading scores for elementary ((> 13%), middle (>8%), and high (>7%) schools. This is even more evident in writing scores at elementary (>17%) and middle (>18%) schools.

10 These scores persist regardless of per pupil spending, teacher-pupil ratio, or race/ethnicity. High school students in schools with more staffing perform nearly 5% better on the ACT, regardless of household income. In addition, there is evidence that librarian- teacher collaboration also has a positive impact on test scores.

11 School Library Collections & Educational Technology - includes traditional print material, free content on the Internet, and licensed databases to which the library must subscribe.

12 Library Collections Typical Book Collections –Elementary approximately 9,000 volumes. (LTLS 10,751) –Middle School approximately 8,700 volumes. (LTLS 8,682) –High School approximately 11,500 volumes. (LTLS 9,508)

13 In schools with larger collections: Fifth graders perform 8% better on the ISAT reading and writing tests. Eighth grade ISAT writing scores are nearly 14% better. Eleventh graders perform nearly 4% better on ACT examinations. These results were only slightly lower when comparing for periodical collection.

14 The importance of collection remains persistent regardless of per pupil spending, teacher-pupil ratio, or students race/ethnicity. In the case book collection, 8th grade ISAT writing scores, 11th grade ACT scores, results remained persistent regardless of household income. In the case of periodical collection, 11th grade PSAE reading and ACT scores remained persistently higher regardless of household income.

15 The survey also examined average copyright date: 1990 for elementary schools for middle schools for high schools.

16 Schools with newer collections average: Almost 13% higher 8th grade writing scores. Almost 11% higher 5th grade writing scores. More than 7% higher 5th grade reading scores. Almost 3% higher ACT scores. The link between collection age and better performance remains regardless of per pupil spending, teacher-pupil ratio,students race/ethnicity, and household income (Exception: 5th grade reading is obscured when comparing for household income).

17 Educational Technology Both computers available in the library and other school computers connected to library resources (e.g., the library catalog, the Internet, licensed databases) play important roles in the school library program.

18 The typical number of computers reported varied by grade level: 9 library computers and 45 other library- connected computers for elementary schools. 13 library computers and 60 other library- connected computers for middle schools. 26 library computers and 125 other library-connected computers for high schools.

19 At every grade level, more library and library- connected computers was linked to higher test scores relative to the schools enrollment: 8 percent for fifth and eighth grade ISAT reading scores. Almost 11% for eighth-grade ISAT writing scores. Just over 5% for eleventh-grade ACT scores.

20 The link between library computers and 5th and 8th grade reading and writing scores persists regardless of per pupil spending, teacher-pupil ratio, and students race/ethnicity. The link between library computers and improved ACT scores remains regardless of per pupil spending, teacher-pupil ratio, students race/ethnicity, and household income.

21 School Library Expenditures Typically, in 2003, total library spending was $4, for elementary schools, $6, for middle schools, and $10, for high schools. Costs included: books, periodicals, audio and visual materials, costs associated with electronic materials, licensed materials, and other day-to-day operating expenses.

22 Reading - schools spending more on their libraries have higher reading scores (elementary > 5%, middle schools > 9%, and high schools nearly 12% improvement). Writing - schools spending more on their libraries have higher writing scores (elementary nearly 10% and middle schools nearly 13% improvement). At the High School level, ACT scores went up nearly 7% with greater school library spending.

23 At the middle school level these results remained intact when accounting for per pupil spending, teacher-pupil ratio, and students race/ethnicity. At the high school level these results remained intact when accounting for per pupil spending, teacher-pupil ration, students race/ethnicity, and household income.

24 School library usage was measured using circulation and group visits (general use and for bibliographic instruction) to the library also seem to have a positive impact on standardized testing scores.

25 The typical elementary reports over 570 loans per week. Elementary schools with more circulation reported a 6% improvement on ISAT reading scores and an 11% improvement on ISAT writing scores. The link for reading held true regardless of per pupil spending and teacher-pupil ratio. The link for writing also held true for students race/ethnicity.

26 For middle and high schools library visits appear to have a strong connection with improved testing. Middle schools reported an average of 18 visits (8 for information literacy instruction). High schools reported an average of 16 visits (10 for information literacy instruction).

27 Middle schools that reported more visits also had 10% better ISAT writing scores. High schools that reported more visits averaged 3-5% improvements on ACT scores. In all instances, these links remained regardless of per pupil spending, teacher- pupil ratio, students race/ethnicity, or household income.

28 Conclusions At all grade levels, test scores tend to be higher: Where access to school libraries is more flexibly scheduled. Where school libraries are staffed more fully. Where school libraries spend more time collaborating with teachers.

29 Conclusions Where larger collections are available. Where educational technology is more widely available to augment the local collection and, generally, to extend access to online resources into the classroom.

30 Conclusions Where school libraries are better funded. Where students use school libraries, both individually and in groups, to learn and practice the information literacy skills they will need to excel on tests and as lifelong learners.

31 Recommendations Access to school libraries should be scheduled as flexibly as possible. A high-quality school library, at any grade level, requires at least one librarian plus support staff. Computers that provided access to library resources - both in the library and elsewhere in the school - should be available to facilitate student performance.

32 Recommendations School libraries should be funded to maintain their traditional collections as well as to expand their reach beyond the librarys wall via educational technology. Students achieve academically when their visits to libraries bring them into contact with librarians as teachers and co- teachers.

33 The Executive Summary can be found at:


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