Supporting reading in lockdown – St John’s brings their library to homesKaren Reed
Sue Round, Marlborough News Online
On Monday St John’s Academy launched a mobile library to deliver books to students in their homes. Anne Stokes, Manager of Learning at St John’s, told Marlborough.news, “The very best way to escape lockdown is to read a book and go into a different world.
I was feeling very sorry for the students who had taken armfuls of library books home at the beginning of the lockdown and they would have nothing left to read by now. Not everyone can afford to buy books.”
Students can now go to the school’s library catalogue online and reserve books to be delivered to their home or they can request a lucky dip and Anne will look at their reading loan history and make some choices for them.
The books are delivered to students’ homes by St John’s staff. Anne commented, “Since Monday 150 books have been delivered. Staff knock on the door and leave the books on the doorstep. Students love seeing a familiar face from school.”
Books can also be left on the doorstep for collection. On their return they are wiped with antibacterial wipes and put on a separate trolley for forty-eight hours before being sent out.
Parents and students have shown their appreciation by email.
“The introduction of the mobile library is an amazing addition to the support being provided.” – Parent
“I would like to thank you for organising the library books so quickly. The children are now enjoying the new books after a day of school work. What a great service!” – Parent
“I was just emailing to say that I finished all three books in the course of 48 hours. I am inhaling these books! I’m going onto the book that isn’t part of the series, then I’ll resort to reading them all again…” – Year 7 student
Anne has also organised the sale of GCSE revision guides for Year 10 who will be taking some mock exams online next week. She received 125 orders for 1500 books which were delivered by staff. The school minibus was used to deliver to villages further afield.
Year 11 and Year 13 who have now completed their GCSE and A-level courses are encouraged to contact the school about returning their textbooks. Staff delivering library books can also collect these books whilst they are out and about.
In addition to providing the home delivery service Anne has also published a lot of links for free reading materials, including comics. The links and further information about the mobile library can be found on the school’s Twitter page @StJohnsMarlb or by emailing Anne on AStokes@stjohns.excalibur.org.uk