New Research Paper From Scholastic Confirms That School Libraries Are Critical To Student Achievement

New Research Paper From Scholastic Confirms That School Libraries Are Critical To Student Achievement
Schools with Integrated Library Curriculum and Certified Media Specialists Report Higher Test Scores

New York, NY, October 5, 2004 -Scholastic Library Publishing, a leading publisher of children's print, non-fiction and online reference material for use in schools and public libraries, today released an important research foundation paper that supports the effectiveness of school libraries and their direct correlation to student achievement. Findings in the research paper, School Libraries Work!, indicate that when school libraries contain strong collections, act as a curriculum partner and are staffed with certified media specialists, students score higher on standardized tests across all grade levels, regardless of socio-economic or educational levels. According to the American Library Association (ALA), about 25 percent of America's school libraries currently do not have a state certified librarian on staff.

School Libraries Work! brings together research from leading experts on school libraries and student learning, such as Dr. Ross J. Todd, Dr. Carol C. Kuhlthau and Dr. Keith Curry Lance. The research paper highlights findings from studies conducted in 14 states since 1999, as well as the 2004 Ohio study, Student Learning through Ohio School Libraries , conducted for the Ohio Educational Library Media Association (OELMA). The collective findings are especially relevant in these times when school administrators face budget cuts and pressure to comply with the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act, and are forced to validate the need for school libraries and their measurable impact on student learning. 

Findings from a 2003 School Library Media Census study in Minnesota proved that twice as many schools with above-average test scores had full-time library media specialists. Similar research in Florida from the previous year confirmed that high schools where library media programs were staffed 60 hours per week or more showed a 22 percent improvement in test scores. In addition to the quantifiable results of the research, the more recent Ohio study looked at various qualitative student experiences beyond achievement on standardized tests. The report found that 99 percent of students in grades 3-12 believed that the school library, its services and the media specialists, all helped them achieve their learning goals. 

"This research paper clearly illustrates the important role school libraries play as a critical resource for improving academic achievement whether it is measured in terms of standardized test scores, literacy or learning more generally," said Greg Worrell, President of Scholastic Library Publishing, a division of Scholastic, the global children's publishing and media company. "Scholastic Library Publishing compiled School Libraries Work! to showcase the urgent need for school libraries and trained media specialists as key curriculum partners in providing a solid foundation for all students."

"Scholastic Library Publishing should be recognized for culling together the definitive research on how school libraries are a vital and effective curriculum partner in children's education," said Dawn Vaughn, President, American Association of School Libraries. "It is of critical importance to our advocacy outreach that we inform not only districts, but decision-makers at the state and federal level, of these significant research studies in ways that are meaningful and provide resources for their continued support in schools. "

More information

About Scholastic Library Publishing
Scholastic Library Publishing creates a multitude of products, both in print and online, for the school and public library market under the imprints of Grolier Ò , Children's Press Ò , Franklin Watts Ò , and Grolier Online Ô. Children's Press offers primarily non-fiction series for elementary and middle schools, while Franklin Watts focuses on non-fiction for the high school market. Grolier publishes encyclopedias and is best known for the brands Encyclopedia Americana and The New Book of Knowledge. Grolier Online is a self-contained, non-commercial electronic gateway offering thousands of resources for student research, including the Encyclopedia Americana Online , The New Book of Knowledge Online and the Spanish language encyclopedia Cumbre en linea T - serving more than 18 million students and teachers.

About Scholastic
Scholastic Corporation (NASDAQ: SCHL) is the world's largest publisher and distributor of children's books and a leader in educational technology. Scholastic creates quality educational and entertaining materials and products for use in school and at home, including children's books, magazines, technology-based products, teacher materials, television programming, film, videos and toys. The Company distributes its products and services through a variety of channels, including proprietary school-based book clubs, school-based book fairs, and school-based and direct-to-home continuity programs; retail stores, schools, libraries and television networks; and the Company's Internet site,
www.scholastic.com.

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October 5th, 2004

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