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BCTF School Staff Alert


October 14, 2008

Drop Everything and Read!


The British Columbia Teacher-Librarians’ Association is marking National School Library Day by urging everyone to participate in the Drop Everything and Read! challenge.

On Monday, October 27, between 11:00 a.m. and 11:20 a.m., people young and old across BC will stop to read for 20 minutes in celebration of the joy reading can bring.

Studies show that daily silent reading is a very effective way of improving reading comprehension, increasing vocabulary, improving spelling, and broadening understanding of others. “Let students choose what they want to read from a well-stocked school library or from home, and then give them the time and space in which to read—away from the threat of tests and questions,” says Karen Lindsay, vice-president of the BCTLA, who would like to see the DEAR challenge grow to include other provinces.

Groups and schools who decide to participate should contact their local media and highlight the importance of libraries, books, and adults as role models in encouraging children to read.

The BCTLA has created a Facebook page to allow people to make their reading count. Point your browser to or search for “Drop Everything and Read!” at

Join with children, parents, trustees, administrators, and politicians in highlighting the need to maintain and reinstate library services in schools.

The Canadian Coalition for School Libraries is unequivocal, “School library programs are being drastically reduced across the country as school boards confront funding shortfalls. But cuts are occurring when researchers abroad have determined that well-stocked, professionally staffed school libraries which remain open during the day are linked to student achievement, reading, information literacy skills, and success at the post-secondary level.”