Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Charter schools less likely than traditional schools to have library media centers

Some advocates say charter schools are the answer to rebuilding rural communities while avoiding school consolidation. But students at charter schools are less likely than those at traditional schools to have access to libraries, according to a survey by the National Center on Education Statistics, Michael Alison Chandler reports for The Washington Post.

The survey, which included respondents from all 50 states, found that during the 2011-12 school year, 27,500 of 29,000 (94.8 percent) of rural schools reported having a library media center, 20,200 of 23,600 (85.6 percent) of city schools had one and 22,500 of 24,300 (92.6 percent) of suburban schools had one. Also, 79,000 of the 85,500 traditional schools (92.3 percent) reported having a library media center, while only 2,200 of the 4,500 charter schools (48.8 percent) reported having one. At the same time, 67 percent of traditional schools with a library media center had a full-time, paid, state certified library media center specialist, compared to 33 percent of charter schools. Of those, 52 percent in traditional schools had a master's degree, compared to 27 percent in charter schools.

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