MONTREAL, DECEMBER 8, 2011 –Librarians are playing an ever more expanding role in the life of the school.
Several English Montreal School Board libraries in the past few years have received complete make-overs: Edward Murphy in Hochelaga-Maisonneuve, St. John Bosco in Ville Émard and Gerald McShane in Montreal North to mention a few. Most recently, at Carlyle in TMR, Home Depot donated materials to paint and redecorate the library. At John Caboto in Ahuntsic, a complete weeding of books took place and new shelving was installed to allow for a total re-organization of the library. A muralist transformed the walls with colourful art. Rosemount High School’s collection was weeded, resulting in a re-organization of the library, and in the spring a fabulous mural will be painted on the walls. At Marymount in NDG, old carpets were ripped out and new flooring installed. A group of 17 church volunteers assisted with shifting thousands of books in order to help with the transformation. The facelift was completed this fall, with new furniture, plants and a new carpet for the reading area. It has now become a welcoming and elegant environment.
“Further updates are envisioned this year in several other libraries,” said Ann Fagan, a librarian and head cataloguer for the EMSB Book and Media Processing Centre. “Aside from improving the aesthetic value of our libraries, we are forging into the digital world with more online resources. Several library collections will be augmented by the addition of e-books, which will be accessible on the school website as well as through Regard, the EMSB library catalogue. The advantage of e-books is that students will be able to access this material from home on their computers. No more excuses of the dog eating the books.”
More along traditional lines, there are also author visits taking place in various schools. Montreal author Paul Bracegirdle visited St. Pius X Adult Education Centre in Auntsic and gave a very interesting presentation; Marie-Louise Gay, an award winning Quebec author and illustrator, will visit the Mackay Centre School of NDG in March, and other visits are being planned through the Culture in the Schools program. “Our EMSB library staff is eager to develop these many resources to improve services to students and school staff,” says Ms. Fagan.