Thursday, April 27, 2017

School Attitudes about Independent Reading Report

Nearly all teachers and principals believe students should have time for independent reading at school, yet only about a third of teachers set aside time each day for this, according to a recent survey. When independent reading occurs, students spend an average of 22 minutes on it.
Asked about the primary barrier to independent reading time, 9 out of 10 teachers cited "demands of the curriculum." Other findings include:
  • About 1 in 10 teachers have no books in their classroom or personal libraries for students to read. About a third of teachers have fewer than 50 books. And 14 percent have more than 500 books.
  • Many teachers update their classroom libraries infrequently. About a quarter do it every couple of years and 13 percent never do it. 
  • Teachers who do in-class independent reading were asked about its benefits. About 40 percent said "students' skills have increased/ students are achieving more.' A quarter said "students learn to love reading."
  • Nearly 4 in 10 principals said they do not have a full-time school librarian, yet 8 in 10 said a librarian is a critical resource for schools.
  • About half of principals and librarians say they need more culturally relevant books, books in other languages, ebooks, books with diverse characters, and high-interest, low-level books.
  • Nearly 30 percent of principals and librarians said they're able to add new titles to their library "once a year or less." About 20 percent add books at least monthly.
Scholastic. (2017). Teacher & Principal School Report: Focus on Literacy. New York: Scholastic.

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