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Julia Donaldson has thrown her support behind the campaign, by recording a film explaining why parents should support the GSL campaign.


In the film, Donaldson discusses how reading for pleasure has “the greatest benefit on children’s later achievement” and describes school libraries as “beneficial to education and to society as a whole, narrowing the gap in aspiration and ability in children.”


She continues: “There’s a lot of children who do not have a lot of books at home and unfortunately a sizable number of children who do not own a single book. And not every family is accessing public libraries.


“There are brilliant teachers in this country but they’ve got a huge amount on their plate and they can’t all be experts on all the books that are out there. That’s why ideally there should be a trained librarian in the library. Every school should have a member of staff who can put the right book into the right child’s hands, so that they can create the readers of the future”.


Donaldson is encouraging parents to talk to their child’s teacher or headteacher about school library provision and to write to their MP to help support the campaign for change. A template letter to MPs is available on the Great School Libraries website.


We are also delighted to announce BookSpace, the library furniture and design company, who have joined as our headline sponsor.  


Chris White, MD of BookSpace comments: “At BookSpace, we believe every child should have access to a well-resourced school library. Research has proven that school libraries have a positive impact on pupil attainment, wellbeing and attitudes towards reading. Yet despite this, two thirds of primary schools don’t have an allocated library budget and the number of secondary school libraries seems to be reducing.  


“To help promote the importance of school libraries, BookSpace is proud to support the Great School Libraries campaign so they can continue their work to improve school library provision and ensure school libraries receive adequate funding, resources, recognition and continue to facilitate a lifelong love of reading.” 


Mary Rose Grieve and Alison Tarrant, Great School Libraries campaign co-chairs, comment: “We are absolutely thrilled with this additional support for our campaign.


Our nationwide survey conducted last year showed that of the schools in the UK that do not have a designated library, 85% say that it is due to a lack of space. Bookspace have some exciting plans to support the campaign and help every school make the most of the space they have.  We are looking forward to working with them to ensure that every child has access to a truly great school library.


“To have the backing of Julia Donaldson for our campaign is fantastic and we really hope it will help encourage parents to join us in calling on the government for change.” 

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