School Libraries: Havering

Department for Education written question – answered at on 24 May 2024.

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Photo of Andrew Rosindell Andrew Rosindell Conservative, Romford

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how much funding her Department has provided for school library resources in the London Borough of Havering in each of the last five years.

Photo of Damian Hinds Damian Hinds Minister of State (Education)

The government believes that all pupils deserve to be taught a knowledge-rich curriculum that promotes the extensive reading of books and other texts, both in and out of school. School libraries complement public libraries in allowing pupils to do this.

It is for individual schools to decide how best to provide and maintain a library service for their pupils, including whether to employ a qualified librarian. Overall school funding is increasing by more than £2.9 billion in the 2024/25 financial year compared to 2023/24, taking the total to £60.7 billion, which is the highest ever level in real terms per pupil. Many headteachers recognise the important role school libraries play in improving literacy and encouraging pupils to read for pleasure and ensure that suitable library facilities are provided. School libraries can take many forms, with some schools preferring to make books a focus in other ways, including housing them within classroom.

The department’s Reading Framework, updated in July 2023, offers non-statutory guidance for teachers and school leaders, including helpful guidance for schools on how to organise their school library, book corner or book stock to make reading accessible and attractive to readers. Given this autonomy, the department does not collect information on school libraries. ​​

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