In the 1980s the Salerno library was housed in what is now Room 9. With demands on space it was relocated to a corridor with locked shelving. This was obviously not conducive to student browsing or borrowing of books. In 2011, with the opening of the New Building, the library was relocated to the old prayer room on the first floor. The library underwent a major refurbishment in 2014, with new open shelving, new sections (history, reference, languages, classics, recommended reads, romance, crime-thriller, fantasy, horror, drama and poetry, younger readers, and general fiction) and a fresh new look. The refurbishment was prompted by student and staff interest in reviving a culture of reading within the school, improving literacy standards and encouraging a love of reading for pleasure.
Stocking/ Donations/ Funding
A major campaign to restock the library was undertaken in 2014, with donations sought from parents, students, past-pupils and the community in general. Donors were encouraged to donate books that would be read and loved by our students. We strongly stressed that it would not become a dumping ground for unwanted and unloved material. Alumni were encouraged to donate a book that they loved and to sign and date the book with the year that they left the school. One very generous past-pupil, who felt strongly about this, donated $1,000 for the purchase of books for the library.
The library is entirely dependent on donations and gifts from staff, parents, past-pupils and the business community. Some of this donation was used to purchase all of the prescribed texts on the new Junior Cycle course and it is hoped that some of the Leaving Cert texts will be purchased also.
To help decorate the library some of the Junior Cert students donated their art project work and quotes related to literature adorn the walls.
Opening Hours/ Library Committee/ Management
The library is open on a Monday and Thursday from 1:30- 2pm. Teachers are also encouraged to bring their students to the library for a reading class, or to borrow a new book.
English teachers of first years bring their class to the library at the start of the year to introduce them to the library and give them a general orientation. Other year groups are brought to the library at various stages throughout the year.
Carol Dunleavy co-ordinates the Library Committee each year. There are representatives from all six years of students on the committee. The committee is responsible for the general running of the library, staff it on a rota basis; they also meet on a monthly basis to brainstorm and come up with ideas and strategies to improve the participation among the general student body. Previous strategies include: a poster campaign to promote literacy within the school; the Read wall, where students would write reviews of books they liked, and committee recommendations within the library.
Events/ Use of Library/ Promotion of Literacy and Reading for Pleasure
There is a specific section of the library for recommended books and new arrivals, where students and staff recommend book that other students might enjoy.
This year, we are focusing on students reading for pleasure and are piloting a Book in the Bag project, where all of the non-exam years are encouraged to have a book in their bag at all times to read if they have a supervision class or a few minutes at the end of a class.
- Students should not be in the library outside of the official opening times without the permission of a teacher.
- If a student wishes to borrow a book they must check out the book with a member of the library committee or a teacher.
- A card has been made for each student and it records all books borrowed and returned.
- Students will be allotted a ‘reasonable time’ to read the book though there is no set time. Students are encouraged to return books as promptly as possible.
- Books must be returned formally to the library committee or teacher on Mondays or Thursdays.
- Students are asked to return books in the condition they borrowed them.
- If a student loses or damages a book they will be fined the replacement cost.
- Books must be returned by the end of the school term.
- Respect must be shown to the library, its books and committee.
- Except in exceptional circumstances, only one book may be borrowed at any one time.