9. Library Programs in Schools with High and Low TAAS Performance

Twenty-five libraries in schools with the highest percent of students who met minimum expectations on TAAS were compared with 25 libraries in schools with the lowest percent of students who met minimum expectations on TAAS at each educational level. At all levels, libraries in schools with the highest TAAS performance have more developed library programs and more resources.

9.1 Elementary School Libraries

In the 25 elementary schools with the highest 4th grade TAAS performance, 99.6 percent of the students met minimum expectations on TAAS reading compared with 64.5 percent in the schools with the lowest TAAS performance.

The libraries in the 25 top elementary schools have more developed library programs than the libraries in the bottom 25 schools. The libraries in the top schools have:

  • 20 percent more library staff per 100 students
  • 25 percent longer operating hours per 100 students
  • 24 percent more print volumes per student
  • 29 percent more current subscriptions to magazines and newspapers per 100 students
  • more than twice as many library dollars per student
Table IV.30: Elementary School Libraries: Program Development
Elementary School Library Predictors 25 Highest Scoring Schools 25 Lowest Scoring Schools
Mean Median Mean Median
Percent of students meeting minimum expectations on TAAS 99.64 100.00 64.53 65.70
Program Development:
Library staff per 100 students .482 .306 .403 .322
Library staff hours per 100 students 11.94 10.51 13.92 9.91
Library hours of operation per 100 students 12.21 7.46 9.75 6.84
Print volumes per student 20.35 20.02 16.47 14.45
Current subscriptions to newspapers and magazines per 100 students 5.18 4.04 4.01 2.40
Library operating expenditures per student $36.02 $19.76 $16.52 $13.32

Among the leadership and collaboration-teaching activities performed by librarians, the two groups of libraries differed with regard to the following:

Elementary school library staff in the top schools spend over one-third more time:

  • Teaching cooperatively with teachers
  • Assisting teachers to access and use information on state programs

These library staff also spend three to nine percent more time:

  • Participating in curriculum committees
  • Meeting with colleagues in the district
Table IV.31: Elementary School Libraries: Leadership and Collaboration
Elementary School Library Predictors 25 Highest Scoring Schools 25 Lowest Scoring Schools
Mean Median Mean Median
Leadership Activities (Hours per week):
Participate in curriculum committees 1.00 1.00 .97 .85
Meet with district library staff .86 .86 .79 .66
Meet with principal .63 .49 1.04 .85
Attend faculty meetings .84 .91 1.03 1.00
Collaboration-Teaching Activities (Hours per week)
Planning instructional units with teachers 1.29 1.00 1.25 1.00
Teaching cooperatively with teachers 2.40 1.29 1.76 1.00
Providing staff development to teachers and staff .56 .43 .59 .50
Assisting teachers to access and use information on state programs .71 .00 .52 .00

Elementary school libraries in top schools have 30 to 50 percent more computers in the library. However, libraries in the low performance schools have more computers with Internet connections and computers with access to library databases; a testimony to the infusion of technology into schools with a high percent of economically disadvantaged student population.

Table IV.32: Elementary School Libraries: Library Technology
Elementary School Library Predictors 25 Highest Scoring Schools 25 Lowest Scoring Schools
Mean Median Mean Median
Library Technology:
Number of computers in library per 100 students 3.91 1.47 2.88 .87
Number of computers with Internet connection per 100 students 1.24 1.07 2.52 .78
Number of computers with access to library catalog per 100 students 2.95 1.01 1.40 .75
Number of computers with access to library databases per 100 students .95 .90 1.55 .65
Number of computers with CD ROM drives per 100 students 3.47 1.10 2.59 .78
Number of computers with networked access to CD ROM resources per 100 students 1.63 .72 1.08 .08

The top performing elementary schools have a significantly larger base (40 percent or more) of computers in their schools that can access networked library resources than do the low performing schools.

Table IV.33: Elementary School Libraries: School Technology
Elementary School Library Predictors 25 Highest Scoring Schools 25 Lowest Scoring Schools
Mean Median Mean Median
School Technology with Access to Networked


Library Resources:
Number of computers per 100 students 16.77 15.39 10.26 6.44
Number of computers with Internet connection per 100 students 12.12 6.54 8.83 4.84
Number of computers with access to library catalog per 100 students 9.08 .00 4.22 .00
Number of computers with access to library databases per 100 students 9.12 .00 5.95 .00
Number of computers with CD ROM drives per 100 students 12.84 7.59 8.44 3.38
Number of computers with networked access to CD ROM resources per 100 students 11.10 1.77 4.23 .00
Number of computers connected to a modem per 100 students 6.24 .00 3.12 .00

There are highly significant demographic and socio-economic differences between the top performing and the bottom performing elementary schools. The lowest performing schools have:

  • Three-times as many economically disadvantaged students
  • Twice as many Hispanic students
  • Nearly three times as many minority students
  • Nearly three tines as many families in poverty in their communities
  • More than three times as many students with limited English proficiency
  • One-half the median family income
Table IV.34: Elementary School Libraries: School/Community Characteristics
Elementary School Library Predictors 25 Highest Scoring Schools 25 Lowest Scoring Schools
Mean Median Mean Median
School/Community:
Percent of students economically disadvantaged 29.07 7.50 84.59 89.00
Percent of white students 65.64 79.90 11.72 2.80
Percent of Hispanic students 25.48 8.25 56.47 54.10
Percent of students with limited English proficiency 11.83 2.45 38.40 34.30
Percent minority staff 18.75 5.20 56.84 55.60
Percent minority population 25.29 12.56 67.18 76.48
Percent of community in poverty 10.73 2.79 29.00 27.29
Median family income $74422 $78456 $37894 $34622

9.2 Middle/Junior High School Libraries

In the 25 middle/junior high schools with the highest 8th grade TAAS performance, 97.6 percent of the students met minimum expectations on TAAS reading compared with 77.1 percent of the students in the schools with the lowest TAAS performance.

The libraries in the 25 top middle/junior high schools have more developed library programs than the libraries in the bottom 25 schools. The libraries in the top schools have:

  • 20 percent more library staff per 100 students
  • 20 percent more library staff hours per 100 students
  • 20 percent longer operating hours per 100 students
  • 29 percent more print volumes per student
  • 34 percent more video materials per 100 students
  • 38 percent more library dollars per student
Table IV.35: Middle/Junior High School Libraries: Program Development
Middle/Junior High School Library Predictors 25 Highest Scoring Schools 25 Lowest Scoring Schools
Mean Median Mean Median
Percent of students meeting minimum expectations on TAAS 97.58 97.60 77.09 79.20
Program Development:
Library staff per 100 students .325 .237 .266 .224
Library staff hours per 100 students 11.61 9.01 9.48 8.97
Library hours of operation per 100 students 8.46 6.56 6.97 5.32
Print volumes per student 17.03 14.54 12.77 14.28
Video materials per 100 students 74.40 39.90 52.64 46.94
Library operating expenditures per student $30.30 $26.41 $20.60 $14.56

Library staff in middle/junior high top schools spend more time on leadership and collaboration-teaching activities than library staff in the lowest performing schools. Library staff in top performing school spend:

  • 17 percent more time attending faculty meetings
  • 31 percent more time meeting with the principal and school administrators
  • 33 percent more time meeting with colleagues in the district
  • 16 percent more time providing training to staff
  • 21 percent more time assisting teachers to access and use information on state programs
  • 27 percent more time planning instructional units with teachers
Table IV.36: Middle/Junior High School Libraries: Leadership and Collaboration
Middle/Junior High School Library Predictors 25 Highest Scoring Schools 25 Lowest Scoring Schools
Mean Median Mean Median
Leadership Activities (Hours per week):
Meet with district library staff 0.95 1.00 0.68 0.50
Meet with library staff outside district 0.34 0.00 0.33 0.00
Meet with principal 0.80 0.50 0.58 0.25
Attend faculty meetings 0.86 0.74 1.02 1.00
Collaboration-Teaching Activities (Hours per week):
Planning instructional units with teachers 2.31 2.00 1.76 1.00
Teaching cooperatively with teachers 4.34 2.50 4.48 2.50
Providing staff development to teachers and staff 0.93 0.87 0.79 0.00
Assisting teachers to access and use information on state programs 0.94 0.72 1.16 0.00

Libraries in top performing middle/junior high schools have 20 to 77 percent more technology resources in their libraries.

Table IV.37: Middle/Junior High School Libraries: Library Technology
Middle/Junior High School Library Predictors 25 Highest Scoring Schools 25 Lowest Scoring Schools
Mean Median Mean Median
Library Technology:
Number of computers in library per 100 students 2.32 1.76 1.80 1.40
Number of computers with Internet connection per 100 students 1.95 1.51 1.57 1.24
Number of computers with access to library catalog per 100 students 1.63 0.98 1.07 0.90
Number of computers with access to library databases per 100 students 1.56 1.06 0.98 0.91
Number of computers with CD ROM drives per 100 students 2.14 1.61 1.42 0.98
Number of computers with networked access to CD ROM resources per 100 students 1.17 0.59 0.52 0.00

Libraries in top middle/junior high schools have five to 12 percent more computers in their schools with access to networked library resources.

Table IV.38: Middle/Junior High School Libraries: School Technology
Middle/Junior High School Library Predictors 25 Highest Scoring Schools 25 Lowest Scoring Schools
Mean Median Mean Median
School Technology with Access to


Networked Library Resources:
Number of computers per 100 students 10.56 6.76 9.55 0.25
Number of computers with Internet connection per 100 students 8.84 4.84 8.89 0.00
Number of computers with access to library catalog per 100 students 6.54 0.00 7.44 0.00
Number of computers with access to library databases per 100 students 7.91 0.42 7.90 0.00
Number of computers with CD ROM drives per 100 students 8.78 6.76 8.35 0.00
Number of computers with networked access to CD ROM resources per 100 students 6.00 0.00 5.61 0.00

The top and bottom performing middle/junior high schools differ significantly in the composition of their student population and community. The bottom performing schools have:

  • Nearly three times as many economically disadvantaged students
  • Nearly four times as many Hispanic students
  • Four times as great a minority population in the community
  • Four time as many people in poverty in the community
  • Five times as many students with limited English proficiency
  • About one-half of the median family income
Table IV.39: Middle/Junior High School Libraries: School/Community Characteristics
Middle/Junior High School Library Predictors 25 Highest Scoring Schools 25 Lowest Scoring Schools
Mean Median Mean Median
School/Community:
Percent of students economically disadvantaged 21.81 14.50 68.30 66.80
Percent of white students 73.92 81.00 20.88 15.75
Percent Hispanic students 16.57 8.90 63.84 64.50
Percent of students with limited English proficiency 3.19 2.00 19.58 15.25
Percent minority staff 8.63 5.00 40.70 37.75
Percent minority population 15.86 9.40 60.36 69.38
Percent of community in poverty 6.86 5.31 28.40 24.63
Median family income $67026 $62750 $36903 $33468

>

9.3 High School Libraries

In the 25 high schools with the highest 10th grade TAAS performance, 98.7 percent of the students met minimum expectations on TAAS reading compared with 76.0 percent in the schools with the lowest TAAS performance.

The libraries in the 25 top high schools have more developed library programs than the libraries in the bottom 25 schools. The libraries in the top schools have:

  • 55 percent more library staff per 100 students
  • 51 percent more library staff hours per 100 students
  • 40 percent longer operating hours per 100 students
  • 46 percent more print volumes per student
  • 58 percent more computer software per 100 students
  • 82 percent more library dollars per student
Table IV.40: High School Libraries: Program Development
High School Library Predictors 25 Highest Scoring Schools 25 Lowest Scoring Schools
Mean Median Mean Median
Percent of students meeting minimum expectations on TAAS 98.72 98.70 76.05 78.90
Program Development:
Library staff per 100 students .606 .302 .346 .254
Library staff hours per 100 students 21.26 11.16 12.63 10.16
Library hours of operation per 100 students 12.70 7.02 8.52 4.72
Print volumes per student 23.99 16.35 15.00 11.89
Computer software packages for in-library use per 100 students 0.63 0.00 1.16 0.22
Library operating expenditures per student $57.47 $29.95 $23.92 $14.56

Library staff in top high schools spend more time on leadership and collaboration-teaching activities than library staff in the bottom schools. They are particularly active in:

  • Providing training to staff
  • Planning instructional units with teachers

However, library staff in the bottom performing schools spend more time:

  • Teaching cooperatively with teachers
  • Meeting with district library staff
  • Attending faculty meetings
Table IV.41: High School Libraries: Leadership and Collaboration
High School Library Predictors 25 Highest Scoring Schools 25 Lowest Scoring Schools
Mean Median Mean Median
Leadership Activities (Hours per week):
Meet with district library staff 0.67 0.70 1.59 0.50
Meet with library staff outside district 0.36 0.00 0.07 0.00
Meet with principal 0.99 1.00 0.62 0.50
Attend faculty meetings 0.72 0.50 0.97 0.85
Collaboration-Teaching Activities (Hours per week):
Planning instructional units with teachers 2.18 1.00 1.46 1.20
Teaching cooperatively with teachers 4.18 3.00 6.54 2.00
Providing staff development to teachers and staff 1.31 1.00 0.35 0.00
Identifying materials for instructional units developed by teachers 5.02 3.00 4.12 3.00
Providing information skills instruction to individuals or groups 6.44 4.00 6.01 3.80

Libraries in top high schools have 11 to 42 percent more technology resources in the library.

Table IV.42: High School Libraries: Library Technology
High School Library Predictors 25 Highest Scoring Schools 25 Lowest Scoring Schools
Mean Median Mean Median
Library Technology:
Number of computers in library per 100 students 3.14 2.54 2.69 1.92
Number of computers with Internet connection per 100 students 2.67 1.88 1.74 1.28
Number of computers with access to library catalog per 100 students 2.16 1.23 1.88 1.06
Number of computers with access to library databases per 100 students 2.19 1.50 1.79 0.95
Number of computers with CD ROM drives per 100 students 2.77 2.09 2.47 1.36
Number of computers with networked access to CD ROM resources per 100 students 1.95 0.72 1.52 0.65
Number of computers connected to a modem per 100 students 1.64 1.70 1.67 0.77

Libraries in top performing high schools have significantly more computers in their schools that can access networked library resources.

Table IV.43: High School Libraries: School Technology
High School Library Predictors 25 Highest Scoring Schools 25 Lowest Scoring Schools
Mean Median Mean Median
School Technology with Access to


Networked Library Resources:
Number of computers per 100 students 28.98 16.69 13.21 0.00
Number of computers with Internet connection per 100 students 23.73 12.92 12.06 0.00
Number of computers with access to library catalog per 100 students 21.03 1.23 8.23 0.00
Number of computers with access to library databases per 100 students 22.54 8.07 12.05 0.00
Number of computers with CD ROM drives per 100 students 22.08 7.17 12.30 0.00
Number of computers with networked access to CD ROM resources per 100 students 17.19 0.00 4.37 0.00
Number of computers connected to a modem per 100 students 19.94 6.48 1.24 0.00

The socio-economic differences between these two groups of high schools are significant. The bottom performing high schools have:

  • Nearly three times as many economically disadvantaged students
  • Two and one-half times as many Hispanic students
  • More than six times as many students with limited English proficiency
  • More than three times as many minorities in the community
  • Four times as many people in poverty in the community
  • Two-thirds the median family income
Table IV.44: High School Libraries: School/Community Characteristics
High School Library Predictors 25 Highest Scoring Schools 25 Lowest Scoring Schools
Mean Median Mean Median
School/Community:
Percent of students economically disadvantaged 21.05 20.10 59.10 58.00
Percent of white students 75.14 80.90 20.10 11.50
Percent of Hispanic students 16.22 9.30 57.85 57.10
Percent of students with limited English proficiency 2.24 1.00 16.26 9.80
Percent minority staff 10.72 7.20 44.49 50.50
Percent minority population 13.76 7.03 60.18 61.71
Percent of community in poverty 6.70 6.39 26.58 23.51
Median family income $63842 $47415 $38220 $37319

9.4 Partial Correlation Analysis

The preceding section illustrated dramatic differences in the library and technology resources of the highest and the lowest performing schools. However, simply increasing library resources will probably not erase these differences, because library and technology variables are confounded with socio-economic variables. That is, those schools with the lowest performance on TAAS also have significantly more economically disadvantaged students as well as a larger percent of minority students. However, since multiple regression indicated that library variables tend to explain from four to eight percent of the variance in TAAS performance, it is likely that maximizing library resources in such schools will make an important difference.

In much of the analysis contained in this study, socio-economic conditions were repeatedly shown to be the strongest predictor of TAAS performance with various library variables coming next in importance as a predictor. Of the socio-economic variables included in the analyses, the variables found to be most relevant to TAAS performance included:

  • Percent of economically disadvantaged students
  • Percent of white students
  • Percent of Hispanic students

By using partial correlations, the effect of the percent of economically disadvantaged students on TAAS performance can be controlled. Partial correlations can show the relationship between the percent of white and Hispanic students and TAAS if all schools had the same percent of economically disadvantaged students. By controlling for the percent of economically disadvantaged students, a truer picture of what impact, if any, ethnic or racial variables have on TAAS performance emerges. The results for elementary, middle/junior, and high schools are presented in the tables below.

Table IV.45: Elementary School Students’ Ethnicity/Race and TAAS
Correlations Percent of White Students Percent of Hispanic Students
Bivariate correlation .508 -.295
Partial correlation controlling for percent of economically disadvantaged students .026* .225

*Not significantly different from zero, p = .686 (2-tailed, a =.05)

Table IV.46: Middle/Junior High School Students’ Ethnicity/Race and TAAS
Correlations Percent of White Students Percent of Hispanic Students
Bivariate correlation .607 -.442
Partial correlation controlling for percent of economically disadvantaged students .229 .148*

*Not significantly different from zero, p = .137 (2-tailed, a =.05)

Table IV.47: High School Students’ Ethnicity/Race and TAAS
Correlations Percent of White Students Percent of Hispanic Students
Bivariate correlation .581 -.445
Partial correlation controlling for percent of economically disadvantaged students .255 -.026*

*Not significantly different from zero, p = .768 (2-tailed, a =.05)

In all instances when economic conditions are controlled, the linear relationship between students’ ethnicity/race and TAAS is either severely weakened or disappears entirely. Furthermore, the relationship between the percent of Hispanic students and TAAS performance either changes from a negative to a positive relationship or to one that is not significantly different from zero. The conclusion is that differences in TAAS performance are much more related to economic disparities than to ethnic or racial distinctions.

The contribution of economic impoverishment to poor academic performance has been demonstrated in many studies. When economic impoverishment is coupled, as seen above, with a corresponding impoverishment in school library and technology resources, students are doubly deprived of the kind of enriched environment that is needed for learning to flourish. This emphasizes all the more the importance of raising library resources to acceptable levels.

Continue on to Chapter 5

 

Page last modified: March 2, 2011