Library planning

Library planning should relate to the school’s strategic plan. Planning should involve library staff, administrators, teachers, students and parents.

Important points:

  • Planning should focus on raising student achievement.
  • All school planning forums should include library staff. This includes curriculum planning.
  • Information literacy skills should be built into curriculum planning.
  • Planning should be based on current research and projected future trends in library management, student learning and ICT.
  • A needs assessment can outline the current and future role of the library.
  • Library services should complement the school’s teaching and learning styles.
  • Library programs and collections should complement the social and cultural profile of the school community.
  • Appropriate staffing, funding, professional learning opportunities and facilities will lead to successful library programs and experiences.
  • Targets should be realistic and achievable. The aim is to connect the school community to quality resources, facilities and activities.
  • Programs should be clearly documented, monitored and evaluated.

Evaluating libraries

Effective school libraries must be responsive to educational and technological change. They contribute to students’ learning and overall school improvement via an onging process of evaluation. If a review of your library is being conducted, ensure you are consulted and involved in the process. Evaluation results are shared and used to plan improvements.

Key questions:

  • Do library resources meet the learning needs of students of all ages and abilities?
  • Can students easily access the library and its resources?
  • Is the library staffing quota adequate?
  • Do opening hours meet needs and expectations?
  • Is the library well used?
  • Do library collections match the curriculum?
  • Does the library cater for personal and leisure interests?
  • Are collections current, in a good state of repair and good quality?
  • Does the library budget provide necessary resources and services?
  • Are students receiving essential information literacy skills and becoming independent learners?
  • How does the library affect school improvement and student achievement?

Statistical reports can be run regularly via most library management systems. They can identify:

  • Number of loans by collection.
  • Number of loans by user.
  • Number of loans by grade and user type.
  • A breakdown of items by age (based on publication date).
  • Number of items in the whole library collection or specific collections.
  • Number of items added.
  • Number of items deleted.

Further reading


School Library Guidelines – home page

Give feedback about the School Library Guidelines

Page updated 21/09/2021

Was this helpful?