7 Ways To Love Your School Library

1-2 minutes

In this blog, you will learn:

  • Why school libraries matter and the benefits of having a school library.
  • About the challenges facing school libraries.
  • 7 ways to love your school library.
  • How to find and apply for the best Education and SEND jobs.

Want to show your school library a little love? Wondering what makes a great school library? In many ways, a library is the heart and soul of a school, especially if it is a cherished and cared-for space. 

However, the school library can easily turn into a storage room or an unloved space. Running a successful school library can have its challenges, especially with dwindling school funds being a serious cause for concern. Analysis has found that almost three-quarters of schools in England are facing real-terms cuts since 2010 due to government funding decisions.

In March 2023, the The Great School Libraries campaign published the results of a survey carried by research company, BMG. They found that across the UK, 14% of primary schools did not have a dedicated library area. For those schools that have a library it is important that it is utilised in the best possible way to ensure students are given the best opportunities for growth and development.

Throughout this blog, we look into the different ways to love your school library and how a school library can help students and staff maximise their potential and thrive.

Why do school libraries matter?

School libraries are an integral part of a child’s education and research shows that school libraries also play a vital role in supporting and strengthening pupil wellbeing. School libraries are an integral part of a child’s education and academic achievement, providing a safe space to read, relax and engage with fellow book lovers.

92% of parents surveyed by National Literacy Trust and Chase thought it important that their child had access to a good school library. The same survey revealed that 20% of parents were buying fewer books for their children and a quarter said they were asking their children to borrow more books from their schools’ libraries. With less books available at home, the need for school libraries is greater than ever. 

The benefits to having a school library

The benefits to having a school library include:

  • Improve results and increase efficiency.
  • A positive impact on students.
  • Supports mental health and wellbeing.
  • Helps build lifelong readers.
  • Can act as homework hubs or quiet places to study.
  • Deliver and teach essential literacy skills.


7 ways to love your school library

7 ways to love your school library include:

  • Have dedicated library staff.
  • Create a warm and welcoming space.
  • Be inclusive.
  • Consider the whole school's approach/attitude.
  • Organise fun activities.
  • Start a book club.
  • Organise fundraisers.


Have dedicated library staff

To ensure the school library is well maintained and well-loved by all, it is important to have dedicated staff that are responsible for the smooth running as well as the appearance of the school library.

Library staff manage all library resources in a school, including learning material that supports the needs of pupils and the wider school community. Having staff that are passionate about reading and the maintenance of the library is vital to support students beyond their academic journey.

Those with library responsibilities not only cultivate a love of reading, but they can also provide support for minority pupils in different aspects of their lives by creating a safe and social space.

Library staff are there to provide book advice, tips and also be someone students can talk to if they need it. Meaningful conversations about books, characters or themes can help foster a trustworthy relationship which can improve the mental health and wellbeing of students as well as their school experience.


Create a warm and welcoming space

If you want pupils to love the school library and visit it regularly, it should feel warm, welcoming and inviting. It’s important to have a tidy, spacious environment and create the right atmosphere so that students can use the library to read independently, study or relax.

A library can also provide a safe space for students struggling to navigate their way through school, which can be vital for their wellbeing and ongoing development.

Children shouldn't be required to stay silent in a library, but be respectful of other people while discussing the books they love!

Why not update the displays and use fun book-related posters, to elevate the reading experience and make people excited to visit the library?

You could even fill the library with soft furnishings such as bean bags and cushions to create a more relaxed atmosphere which feels different to classroom desks and chairs. Making the school library comfortable and inclusive is a great way to give students a place to escape into a good book. 

Encourage inclusivity

Ensure that all pupils in school feel represented by including books from all cultures, genders, and walks of life. It’s important that pupils can find characters in books that they can identify with and relate to.

Fill your library with books from around the world to ensure that the school library represents all students and makes every pupil love visiting the library.

Consider the whole school's approach/attitude

Loving the school library doesn’t stop with library staff and book lovers. All staff and pupils should have an input in the success and growth of the school library. That includes how the library is maintained, cared for and used by all. 

According to a National Literacy Trust and Chase survey an estimated 41% of families said there was no quiet space for children to read at home, which can affect their mental health, reading skills and development. For those that don’t have the opportunity to read in a quiet environment at home, schools can provide the space, time and resources for students.

Why not organise reading time in the library, so that every child has the opportunity to read in a quiet space?

You could even assign library monitors and train children as librarians to get everyone involved, active and to keep it tidy. 

Organise fun activities

You could love your school library by organising fun activities and opportunities for students to discover how fun reading can be. Reading is extremely important for the growth and development of children but a library is so much more than just having good books. It is also important to engage students in discussions, relationships and topics that reading can encourage.

If you're on a tight budget, why not start a book swap, encouraging students to bring their own books from home to swap with others? Pupils can take books home as long as they bring one in its place. This is a wonderful way to encourage pupils to share, respect other people’s property as well as ignite discussions and socialising among peers.

Start a book club

A book club is a great way to make use of library space and get students passionate about reading and sharing the experience with others. This is a fun and voluntary activity that can take place during lunchtime or after school.

Dedicate a corner of the library to the school book club so members can track their progress with a chart marking the dates and times of the meetings, names of the members and even reviews of the books.

Either choose one book for everyone to discuss, or simply allow students to read anything, and discuss what they’ve read and learnt in each club meeting. Sharing opinions, thoughts and reviews is a great way to find new books to read and appreciate other people's interpretations.

You could even host creative book activities during book club e.g. design new book covers, make bookmarks and write blurbs, and put them on display in the library to encourage other pupils to join in.

Organise fundraisers

An insufficient budget is a challenge at most schools these days and not having the right allocated funds to ensure the school library is taken care of can be frustrating. Even with budget restrictions, it is important to love your school library and ensure that it remains up to date, fun and welcoming for students.

One way of filling the school library with great books and comfortable furnishings is to organise a fundraiser or raffle. By raising the money to buy books and supplies for their school library, students will have a sense of pride, accomplishment and love for their school library.

Recruit teaching staff

As a specialist education recruitment agency, we support mainstream and SEND schools with their temporary, permanent and temp-perm staffing needs.

We currently work with hundreds of schools and have exclusive access to some of the best Teachers and Teaching Assistants in the North West.

If you’re struggling to fill a teaching vacancy, why not get in touch with one of our team to see how we can help?

If all this library talk has made you eager to read, discover the best books on teaching and 5 books every educational professional should read.

Teaching jobs

If you’re searching for your next teaching job, why not take a look at the latest teaching vacancies, or simply upload your CV to be notified when a relevant position becomes available.

Meet Jamie Heath

Who is Spencer Clarke Group?

Established in 2017, we’re a vibrant and progressive recruitment agency based in the heart of the North West. 

We continually reimagine the recruitment process to challenge convention and defy expectations; from creating a better recruitment experience to remodelling employee engagement, we thrive off doing things differently and turning heads along the way. 

We operate in two sectors:

Private Sector

Public Sector 

In eleven specialisms:

Accountancy & Finance

Education & SEND

Construction, Trades & Labour

Healthcare, Social Care & Nursing


Corporate Functions & Business Support

HR & Workforce Development

IT & Digital

Property & Asset Management  

Planning, Development & Regeneration 

Highways, Infrastructure & Engineering

© Spencer Clarke Group 2023
Site by Venn