The librarian at my daughter’s school is a local celebrity. Students always pop their heads in the door throughout the day looking for her anytime we’ve hosted an event in the library. She knows hundreds of kids by name and you can hear her excitedly greet them throughout the halls. Unfortunately, many NYC schools do not have librarians. In fact, some don’t even have a library. Out of 1,600 public schools, there are only around 260 certified librarians.
Under state law, schools with grades six through 12 with more than 700 students must have a full-time librarian, and schools with less than that must have one part-time librarian. But Chalkbeat found that nearly a third of schools that should have a full-time librarian — don’t. And of course, many of those schools are ones that serve students with higher poverty rates. Meanwhile studies have proven that students who attend schools with certified librarians tend to perform better academically.
While there is a “Teacher 2 Librarian” program that partners with colleges to help teachers earn a master’s degree in library and information science, many feel like it’s a waste of money if there are no jobs available. Read more about the issue here.