Based on my interactions with and visits to the schools that will be receiving new books in the 2019-2020 school year, I believe that their libraries will be able to make the most use of the books. Each school is at a different stage in their reconstruction/repair. Yet the principals and their staff have succeeded in continuing the culture of reading in their schools, from designating mandatory library visit times to ensuring the regular replenishment of classroom libraries. Jones Beaupierre Primary, Baroness Patricia Scotland Primary, and Christian Union Primary have full rooms designated for their libraries and have been among the earliest of this group of schools to return to their library—they have made the environments bright and comfortable for their students.
For those who have ended this school year without their libraries completed, this has not hindered the reading. They have set up small, well-stocked, regularly-rotated libraries in the classrooms and encouraged book borrowing. Even Tête Morne Primary, which was completely destroyed and is housed in temporary quarters, has made sure that the students have access to books through classroom libraries. In the end, I feel that these schools have functional libraries and will make good use of their new books from Hands. —Giselle Laurent, Hands Literacy Link for Dominica
“The CSEC exam prep books sent by Hands are being used a lot—they have been so helpful. Form 1 (Grade 7) classes are being brought to the library. This is not an official timetable, but it is being done regularly so that they can check out books. They are very aware of the collection they have and gave Hands a large list of gaps they would love to fill in 2019-2020. Learning Support has started coming to the library for library time—one Grade 7 student who was struggling became an avid reader at the library and is now performing better in classes and needs less support. Mr. Charles, the school’s beloved librarian, retired in March—we miss him! Ms. Weekes from Learning Support loves the library, and Principal Morris feels she would be a great person to take the reins.”
“Roles have been assigned to Library Team members so that the HOD English will not be so burdened. Students are gradually accepting library rules (but they have to be constantly reminded about leaving their bags and reducing the noise level). A copy of the catalogue was created and printed, and the librarian will adjust the quantity column as instructed by the HOD.”