6. Library Facilities and Usage

The School Library Programs: Standards and Guidelines expect libraries to provide access during and beyond the instructional day. Seventy-one percent of the elementary school libraries reported that they provide access before and after the school day. On average, elementary school libraries are open for two hours a week before the school day and 2.7 hours at the end of the school day. Between 81 and 85 percent of the middle/junior high school libraries indicated that they are open before and after the school day. On average these libraries are open for 2.7 hours per week before and after the school day. Eighty-three percent of the high school libraries also have extended service hours. On average, they are open for 2.8 hours a week before the school day and 3.9 hours at the end of the school day.

Table III.38 Library Service Hours Per Week
Service Hours Per Week Elementary Schools


(267)
Middle/Junior High Schools


(104)
High Schools


(129)
Mean Hours % of Libraries Mean Hours % of Libraries Mean Hours % of Libraries
Mean hours library is open per week during school hours 36.3 99.2% 37.0 100.0% 37.6 98.4%
Mean hours library is open per week before school hours 2.0 70.0% 2.7 84.6% 2.8 82.9%
Mean hours library is open per week after school hours 2.7 70.8% 2.7 80.8% 3.9 82.9%

The elementary school libraries' operating hours per week are most strongly associated with the library's operating budget per student and subscriptions. Elementary school libraries with higher operating expenditures per student are more likely to be open more hours per week. Libraries with larger collections of newspapers and magazines are also more likely to be open more hours per week.

Table III.39 Elementary School Library Service Hours Correlations
Correlation of Library Service Hours Per 100 Students with: Pearson Probability (p) Correlation (r)  Number (n)
Current subscriptions to magazines and newspapers .461 .000 256
Library's operating expenditures per student .499 .000 256

At the middle/junior high school level, libraries that operate more hours per week per 100 students are associated with greater library use as reflected by the number of library visits per student and the volume of materials checked out per 100 students. These libraries are also characterized by larger print collection per student and video collection per 100 students. Libraries that operated more hours per week also tend to have larger operating budgets per student.

Table III.40 Middle/Junior High School Library Service Hours Correlations
Correlation of Service Hours Per 100 Students with: Pearson Correlation (r) Probability (p)  Number (n) 
Number of volumes per student .569 .000 103
Video materials per 100 students .405 .000 103
Materials checked out per 100 students .541 .000 102
Scheduled and unscheduled visits to library by individuals per student .599 .000 102
Library's operating expenditures per student .460 .000 101

High school libraries with longer service hours per 100 students are likely to have larger collections of print volumes per student and newspapers and magazines per 100 students. Libraries that operated more hours a week per 100 students are also associated with greater library use as measured by the number of materials checked out per 100 students and number of library visits per student.

Table III.41 High School Library Service Hours Correlations
Correlation of Service Hours Per 100 Students with: Pearson Correlation (r) Probability (p)  Number (n) 
Number of current subscriptions to newspaper and magazines per 100 students .768 .000 126
Number of print volumes per student .765 .000 126
Volumes purchased in 1999-00 per 100 students .403 .000 104
Materials checked out per 100 students .620 .000 125
Scheduled and unscheduled visits to library by individuals per student .499 .000 125
Library's operating expenditures per student .365 .000 121

Data reported by libraries point to a heavy use of the library by individuals and classes. Librarians reported over 100 contacts per week with individuals and classes for the purpose of information skills instruction. The average number of visits by classes ranged from 34 to 38. Visits by individuals ranged from 347 to 437, on average.

Inter-library loans constitute one means by which the School Library Programs: Standards and Guidelines encourage libraries to access information resources beyond the campus. Between 50 and 60 percent of the libraries loan materials to other libraries in the district. Only about five percent of the libraries reported loaning to and borrowing materials from libraries outside the district.

Table III.42 Library Use Per Week
Use per Week Elementary Schools Middle/Junior High Schools High Schools
Mean # % of Libraries Mean # % of Libraries Mean # % of Libraries
Number of scheduled and unscheduled visits to library by individuals 437.03 94.4% 346.63 96.1% 358.75 94.6%
Number of scheduled and unscheduled visits to library by classes or other groups 33.94 97.4% 35.90 96.1% 37.68 95.3%
Number of scheduled and unscheduled information skills instruction contacts with individuals 87.50 92.1% 74.97 94.2% 114.97 92.2%
Number of scheduled and unscheduled information skills instruction contacts with classes or other groups 18.55 87.6% 17.47 86.5% 27.45 90.7%
Total number of books and other materials checked out during the most recent full week 982.39 92.5% 596.24 93.3% 247.06 83.7%
Number of materials used in the library 798.49 80.9% 342.78 79.8% 698.45 83.7%
Number of loans provided by library to other librarians in district 5.95 60.3% 3.21 51.9% 2.66 49.6%
Number of loans provided by library to other libraries in district and ESC 4.67 50.6% 2.93 42.3% 2.03 44.2%
Number of loans provided by library to other libraries outside the district 0.08 2.6% 0.17 6.7% 0.30 4.6%
Number of loans received by library from other libraries outside the district 0.24 4.1% 0.07 3.8% 0.07 6.2%

At all educational levels, library use is significantly correlated with library staff hours. Libraries with more staff hours per 100 students exhibit greater use as reflected by the number of visits to the library and the volume of materials checked out.

Table III.43 Elementary School Library Aides Hours and Visits to Library
Correlation of Library Aides Hours Per Week with: Pearson Correlation (r) Probability (p) Number (n)
Scheduled and unscheduled visits to library by individuals .223 .000 264
Table III.44 Middle/Junior High School Library Staff Hours and Visits to Library
Correlation of Library Staff Hours Per Week with: Pearson Correlation (r) Probability (p) Number (n)
Librarian hours per 100 students with:
Scheduled and unscheduled visits to library by individuals .631 .000 101
Number of materials checked out per 100 students .598 .000 101
Library staff hours per 100 students with:
Scheduled and unscheduled visits to library by individuals .619 .000 101
Scheduled and unscheduled information skills instruction contacts with individuals .404 .000 101
Table III.45 High School Library Staff Hours and Visits to Library
Correlation of High School Library Staff Hours Per Week with: Pearson Correlation (r) Probability (p) Number (n)
Scheduled and unscheduled visits to library by individuals .469 .000 125
Number of materials checked out per 100 students .613 .000 125

The School Library Program Standards and Guidelines for Texas encourage a flexibly-scheduled environment. According to elementary school librarians, on average, about 33 percent of class visits to the library are flexibly scheduled. At the middle/junior high school level and high school, the percent of flexibly scheduled visits to the library are 72 and 82 percent, respectively.

Table III.46 Flexibly and Regularly Scheduled Class Visits to Library
Mean Percent of Flexibly and Regularly Scheduled Class Library Visits Elementary Schools


(267)
Middle/Junior


High Schools


(104)
High Schools


(129)
Flexibly scheduled class visits 33.55 72.15 82.14
Regularly scheduled class visits 66.45 27.85 17.86

Continue on to Chapter 4

 

Page last modified: March 2, 2011