Judging Success

Effective libraries must contribute to school improvement and pupils’ learning.

Most schools will have their own templates for self evaluation and review. The library should be included within this process and contribute to the school review. Some of the measures used will be library specific, but others may draw on information gathered by colleagues to illustrate that the library and librarian has made a contribution to raising standards.

School Library Award

Schools can self-evaluate through SLS-UK’s School Library Award.  This is a tool for you to assess the impact of your own school library.  It looks at 20 key library activities including quality of stock, reading promotional activities and involvement of staff.  SLS UK guides you to your nearest Schools Library Service who will judge your self-assessment and award a certificate to schools achieving “establishing” level or above in 10 or more activities, with a Gold Award Certificate for schools achieving “enhancing” level in 15 activities.  There is a small administration charge for your application

Benchmark Checklist

 PDF Version Excel Spreadsheet version
Benchmark Yes No Comments Future action required
School has library and / or book corners in each classroom        
School has current library policy        
Library included in school development plan        
Library has at least 10 books per pupil        
School replaces at least 10% stock each year        
There is a separate library budget        
Stock is edited throughout the year        
School uses nearest Schools Library Service        
Library is strategically managed by a professional librarian        
Library staffed by volunteer (s)        
Library is staffed by paid adult        
Team of children librarians are trained and help run the library        
Library is accessible all day (i.e. not closed to individuals because of group work, music lessons etc)        
Library is open before and after school        
Library is attractive & welcoming        
Shelving/ furniture is age appropriate        
Books are displayed attractively to promote reading        
Library guiding and signs are clear & simple         
Fiction is arranged in alphabetical order        
Non- fiction is classified by the Dewey System        
Library has a range of non book resources        
Library has internet access for children in the library / adjacent space        
Library issue and management system is computerised and networked around the school (i.e. every teaching area and for use on a white board)        
Each class visits the library regularly for project work and there is a planned integrated programme of support for developing independent learning skills        
Classes visit regularly to choose books for recreational reading         
Children can use the library independently        
Reading for pleasure promoted in school        
Children can borrow books from the library        
Every child has a book on loan from the library        
Book club or library club run on a regular basis        
TOTAL indicators