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Wednesday, June 19
The Indiana Daily Student


MCCSC, public library offer students resource access


The Monroe County Community School Corporation has teamed up with the Monroe County Public Library to give students greater electronic access to books and research.

“About a year ago we began talking to MCCSC about how they wanted to access our electronic resources,” Josh Wolf, manager of children’s services for MCPL, said.

Director of MCPL Sara Laughlin said this partnership is focused around MCCSC’s
Digital Learning Initiative and the integration of iPads into their education system.

“Homework and schoolwork are changing,” Laughlin said. “It used to be that if you needed to study or do a report, you had to come down to the library and check out half a dozen books. Now there’s a better way: the Internet.”

The program starts with each student receiving a library card that can be used not only when they go to MCPL, but also to access the library’s e-books online.

“The students can go to their school’s website, type in their number and the library website is one portal choice,” Wolf said.

Laughlin said MCPL has taken cues from other school-library partnerships across the nation.

“Since the library card number is 14 digits, we’re planning on linking each student’s account with their lunch number,” she said. “Everyone can remember their lunch number.”

Laughlin said electronic resources have many benefits for students of all ages.
“Across the age spectrum, K-12, needs are very different,” she said.

“Electronic content for elementary students is wonderful. We have storybooks where you can actually turn the pages, they can be read to you. It’s all great.”

Wolf said there are many other electronic resources available.

“We have interactive games, enhanced picture books through the kids’ website TumbleBook, all sorts of things,” he said.

Laughlin said MCPL has had a long-standing partnership with MCCSC, from supporting a summer school program for kids struggling in reading to mutual training for teachers and librarians. She said she hopes this electronic partnership can be expanded as well.

“We’ve switched paradigms in this partnership from e-access to all the things we could do together,” Laughlin said.

One new potential partnership comes with the creation of the MCPL Digital Creativity Center. The center, which Laughlin said they will hopefully start building by the end of the year, will provide media creation software and computers for the public.

“We used to buy books for the whole community,” she said. “Now that could shift to software.”

Whatever future partnerships MCCSC and MCPL have, Laughlin said they will involve these new technologies.

“The great thing about electronic copies are you can’t lose them,” she said. “An electronic book is never overdue.”

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