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United Kingdom school libraries share: What I would change


School libraries share

What is the one thing school library staff in the United Kingdom would change about their library or role?

The 2020 School Library Survey* asked this question and participants identified 6 key changes they would make:

  • Changes to the library space - updating/refurbishing the library, increasing the size, relocating to a more central place in the school or changing the layout of the library.
  • More time to focus on their role or a dedicated library role, as opposed to performing multiple roles in the school, to develop library services.
  • More engagement with students and teachers - more library visits, more time interacting with/working with students, and for teachers to make better use of the library.
  • More timetabled library lessons - to teach literacy skills, information literacy, research skills, and library skills.
  • Increased collaboration, to be more involved/integrated in the curriculum, and to work with staff to promote reading.
  • Budget to develop the collection – both physical and digital

There were also some participants who shared there is nothing they would change about their role (except for the challenges presented by COVID!).

“I am probably one of the few librarians who are happy with my situation. So can't think of anything. Just want the students back into the library space as soon as COVID restrictions are lifted.”

“I can honestly say, I would change nothing (usually - this year has been a challenge for all).”

We have collated the responses to this question in a feature document, “United Kingdom school libraries share: What I would change about my library or role”. 

To download the full feature, visit our resources page.

* The 2020 School Library Survey, conducted by Softlink on behalf of the SLA, was launched on 24th November 2020 and closed on 20th December 2020. The survey asked a range of questions about school library spaces, staffing, resources, the impact of COVID-19, and other important issues that arose in 2020.


About the SLA

The SLA is a United Kingdom focused charity which supports everyone involved in school libraries.

We believe that every pupil is entitled to effective school library provision and the educational, emotional, and developmental benefits that come with it.

The SLA is committed to supporting, promoting, and sustaining high quality reading, teaching, and learning opportunities, for all in a diverse and changing world.

With around 2300 members, we provide training and access to resources to support the running of school libraries and the continuing development of all school library staff.

To learn more about the SLA, read “How can the SLA (School Library Association) help you?”  

To find out more visit our website sla.org.uk, follow us on Twitter @uksla or contact us via email info@sla.org.uk  

About Softlink

Softlink has been providing school library software for over 30 years, offering solutions to meet the ongoing needs of schools globally.  

Users of Oliver v5 benefit from regular new feature updates, which are developed in direct response to feedback and insights gained from our active user community.  

LearnPath users can create, publish, and share rich learning guides and content. They also have access to over 300 ready-made guides produced by teacher librarians

For even more ideas and resources visit our blog  


Read more School Library Survey feature articles