March 23, 2018

The Advocate's Toolbox

New Report from Scholastic Shows School Libraries Work


Scholastic, Inc. has just released the 2016 edition of “School Libraries Work!,” a research report that proves what we’ve all known all along, of course. School librarians and libraries have a positive impact on student learning. Through the report, Scholastic is “seeking to empower librarians, classroom teachers, school and district leaders, policy makers, parents, and communities by arming them with the most powerful research-based frameworks, recommendations, and support for school library programs.”

National- and state-level findings from more than 30 separate research studies—including the September 2011 cover story of School Library Journal—are included in the compendium, demonstrating the integral role school libraries play in teaching and supporting student learning while confirming that when school librarian staffing is reduced, achievement in English Language Arts suffers.

Two of the more eye-opening statistics in the report debunk the myth that, as digital natives, kids and teens “just know” how to find the information they need. In fact, 75 percent have no idea how to locate articles and resources they need for their research, while 60 percent don’t verify the accuracy or reliability of the information they do find, according to the study.

Other key research points from the report include:

  • The previously mentioned SLJ analysis found states that gained school librarian positions between 2005 and 2009 experienced larger increases and no decreases in National
    Assessment of Education Progress (NAEP) reading scores for 4th grade, while states that lost school librarians experienced smaller increases or decreases in reading scores.
  • A South Carolina study commissioned by the South Carolina Association of School Librarians revealed that students were more likely to show strengths and less likely to show weaknesses on writing standards if their school libraries were staffed with a full-time librarian plus a full or part-time assistant.

Check out the complete report.





  1. It appears this report is only available to US residents even though one Canadian province participated. Kinda sucks