SLANZA’s response to the
National School Library Survey
The majority of respondents believe that the Library promotes and supports reading for pleasure. We think this is as it should be and it is probably the most common denominator for all school types. In addition, the majority of respondents see that the Library’s role in providing social and emotional learning and wellbeing is extremely important. This supports research on the Library as a third space and is a value proposition for the Library’s place in the school community.
There appears to be a disconnect between the Board of Trustees and what happens in the Library, and worryingly, one-third of respondents have had their budgets cut. We note that Library staff expertise appears to be underutilised in supporting literacy and reading for pleasure, particularly in primary schools. We are concerned about the low level of average hours per week worked by Library staff in both primary and intermediate schools, and how that adversely impacts student reading ability and achievement. The report highlighted a need to improve our services and competencies pertaining to Māori and Pasifika students. We hope to begin addressing this issue with our professional development opportunities this year.
Thank you to all the members who completed the survey. Your response helped to inform us of the current state of school libraries in Aotearoa New Zealand, of the role our libraries have in supporting literacy, learning, and student well-being. Vital information to build an understanding of where school libraries are at and to help guide us in strengthening and supporting our SLANZA members through our community, guidance and professional development.
If you have any queries regarding the survey, contact your regional SLANZA National Executive representative.
Once again, we wish to thank Miriam from National Library for the extensive work she put into this National School Library Survey.
School Library Association of New Zealand
Te Puna Whare Mātauranga a Kura