The traditional library – featuring rows of shelves lined with books and an atmosphere where you can hear a pin drop – is largely gone. But with the dusty being replaced with a more dynamic, diverse environment, is the way you’re running your library keeping up?
School libraries are no longer simply repositories of paperbacks and periodicals. Increasingly, they’re a popular home for student clubs and committee meetings, Esports stadiums, a hub for internet access, and even makeshift classrooms. This is putting huge pressure on what’s needed from the school library space – which is where Accessit’s Library Management System is proving invaluable to those tasked with running it.
In a world where talk about literacy often comes in second place to what’s good for cost savings, Accessit Library is designed to support schools to achieve both. From streamlining workflows to helping build a connected community of learners, it makes the set-up and running of library services easy and straightforward.
This leaves library staff – whose ranks increasingly include teachers and even administration staff taking on the role of part-time librarian – free to focus on giving our kids great results.
Developed here in New Zealand and used around the world, Accessit has seen many changes in the 25-plus years since beginning life as a start-up helping to give libraries and learners the systems they so badly needed. During this time, it’s been amazing to see the developing demands on our software mirroring the evolution on the ground in school libraries.
We’ve seen automatic syncing with student management and data management systems to keep student and class information up to date, plus the hugely popular auto-emailing of overdue reminders to softly let students and their parents know that they may need to have another look in their bag.
Most Accessit customers are now cloud based. This not only saves the schools on IT time and consulting costs, but also benefits learning as kids can easily access their library and all their resources to research, whether at school or at home.
One person can scan and catalogue 100 new books in a minute and have the book data automatically recognised and downloaded, so there goes the need for extensive and tedious data entry, meaning that teacher-librarians can get back their teaching (or lunch) time.
Accessit can help staff access and easily pull reports on a library’s usage to prove just how critical the library is, and this also means the investment in the library is better focused and can change with what students are looking for … graphic novels anyone?
It links with the EPIC media resources to save them from some of the less trustworthy search results they find elsewhere online. The system can even show them where the book they’re looking for is in the library, saving valuable staff time and developing more independent researchers.
We’ve spent our time making the often basic but time-consuming tasks simple and easy to manage, so librarians and teachers can focus on students not admin, and that’s what has helped us make our name.
While budgetary pressures on investing in libraries and librarians are tough, using Accessit Library means schools can balance the books while keeping up their investment in literacy and learning outcomes.
If there’s one thing we would ask of schools in 2023, it would be to take a look at how you’re using your library and consider whether it is reaching its full potential. Here at Accessit, we believe every school can and invite you to give us the opportunity to show how we can help. Ninety-nine per cent of our schools are still with us after all these years, so we must be doing something right!
By AJ Johnston, Library Legend, Accesit.
For more go to accessitlibrary.com/great/
INTERFACE February 2023