Tuesday, May 16, 2017

The Access Gap: Poverty and Characteristics of School Library Media Centers

Tipton, Katy

Pribesh, S. s., Gavigan, K. k., & Dickinson, G. g. (2011). THE ACCESS GAP: POVERTY AND CHARACTERISTICS OF SCHOOL LIBRARY MEDIA CENTERS. Library Quarterly, 81(2), 143-160.

This article is about the disparity between school libraries in poor areas and school libraries in more affluent areas. As someone who started her career at a school where every student received free lunch and breakfast, this article served to reinforce what I had gathered from personal experience. 

Through surveys and studies of demographics, the authors seek to prove what they call the "access gap" - "namely, the differences in school library characteristics (staffing, books added to collection, schedule, and number of days closed) in schools with various concentrations of students living in poverty." (Preibesh, Gavigan, & Dickinson, 2011) Their findings are sobering and reinforce the need for libraries in schools.

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