There was a time when libraries – especially high school libraries – were popular places for students to gather.
And they were even more popular when it was time to look for information needed to complete source themes. This also meant the few copies of encyclopedias were extremely popular.
This was before computers were invented, so students took notes by hand and used typewriters to produce their finished products.
But fast-forward a few decades and things have changed.
Students can now find all information they need while sitting in their living room using a laptop computer or even a cellphone. With one click, they can print copies of their work in color and with photos, on their home printer.
So the huge paper volumes of encyclopedias, if even available, are sitting on a shelf gathering dust along with typewriters.
Educators have become aware that few students today use the libraries to find books and very few ever check them out. So educators and are now looking for new ways to use school library space.
Plano School Board members have joined the ranks of educators who are changing how their high school libraries are being used.
A group of Plano educators recently visited Burlington Central High School to see how its library was renovated for new uses. They also visited Aurora’s Santori Library to see how they are dealing with the changes in library uses.
A report was given to Plano School Board members at their December meeting to explain what a Plano High School team along with staff members Jessica Dellorto and Joe Kampf think should be done to turn the high school library into a 21st-century learning space.
The district had hired architects to prepare five computer-generated virtual tours of proposed new spaces. Two of them, along with a report on the progress of the educators, were presented to board members at their December meeting.
A detailed presentation will be made to school board members at the Jan. 28 meeting asking them to take action on the proposed changes.
School officials are expected to ask school board members to seek bids for the renovation, expected to take place between February and August.