Summary: Based on research from the School Librarian Investigation—Decline or Evolution? (SLIDE) project, this report utilized NCES school librarian employment data for the 2020-2021 school year. Data characteristics from 12,537 school districts were examined including poverty, locale, and district enrollment, as well as student demographics including race and ethnicity. Data supported previous findings that access to school librarians is strongly related to race and ethnicity and further exacerbated for students living in extreme poverty, in more-isolated locales, and in the smallest districts—locales where students are less likely to have access to the educational resources available in large urban areas.
In school year 2021-22, 54% of U.S. students in all districts were without any librarians during the COVID-19 pandemic and almost 3 million students in majority nonwhite districts were without any librarians. The gap between students in districts with a “library privilege” and those without librarians continues to widen. Read the full report for more.
Lance, K. C., , D. E., & Gerrity, C. (2023, January 6). The school librarian equity gap: Inequities associated with race and ethnicity compounded by poverty, locale, and enrollment. Peabody Journal of Education. https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/0161956X.2023.2160112