Friday, May 8, 2015

The value of libraries


Published in the NY Daily News, May11, 2015, with the title "Carnegie was right."

Re: New York City libraries take  $10M hit in de Blasio's 2016 budget.  May 8.

"When I read about the way in which library funds are being cut and cut, I can only think that American society has found one more way to destroy itself."  Isaac Asimov.

I wonder if Mayor de Blasio is aware that research over the last three decades has repeatedly shown that libraries have tremendous value for school-age children: Children who live in states that provide more access to reading material through public and school libraries do better on standardized tests of reading. 

Libraries are especially important for children of poverty: The school library and the public library (especially during the summer) are often their only source of books. 

We complain about our children's reading levels, but fail to provide the means for improving it.

Stephen Krashen
Professor Emeritus
University of Southern California

Original article: http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/nyc-libraries-10m-hit-de-blasio-2016-budget-article-1.2214965
This letter: http://www.nydailynews.com/opinion/11-baltimore-brady-bibi-article-1.2215986

Not included in published letter -
Sources:
Krashen, S. 2004. The Power of Reading. Portsmouth: Heinemann and Westport: Libraries Unlimited.  (second edition)
Krashen, S., Lee, S.Y. and McQuillan, J. 2012. Is the library important? Multivariate studies at the national and international level. Journal of Language and Literacy Education, 8(1): 26-36.
Lance, K. 2004. The impact of school library media centers on academic achievement. In C. Kuhlthau (Ed.), School Library Media Annual. (pp. 188-197). Westport, CT: Libraries Unlimited.
McQuillan, J. 1998. The Literacy Crisis: False Claims and Real Solutions. Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann Publishing Company.




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