Your annual report to the Board of Trustees (BOT) enables you to show evidence demonstrating the impact your library has had on student learning. Here are some tips on creating a succinct, engaging report that is likely to be read.
- To show your BOT (and the school community) how the investment they have made in the library throughout the year has made a difference to student learning
- To document the impact of any major changes, special programmes and developments in your library, including progress on any development objectives that feature in your school’s Annual or Strategic Plan
- To identify key areas for development for the coming year and seek BOT support
- To acknowledge assistance, donations and BOT support.
The level of detail depends on whether your school requires you to use a specific template for the School library annual report, and whether your BOT expects a full report or a brief summary.
Some general tips are:
- brevity, clarity and use of plain English (no jargon) are essential
- use bullet points or numbers
- provide data to support your statements.
The following topics are a guide. Select those that relate to your school.
Support for your school’s reading programme
Describe how the library has responded to the analysis of reading data through:
- targeted book-buying
- reading incentive programmes involving the library
- special events supporting reading or writing
- collaborations between teachers, literacy leaders and library team
- collaborations with outside agencies, including families / whānau, and the public library
If you have undertaken a student survey to gauge reading preferences, present the summarised results in an Appendix, but refer here to main findings, actions and the resulting impact.
Support for inquiry learning
Outline how the library has supported inquiry learning and information literacy development, with evidence to support your statement. Include examples of collaboration between library team and teachers, or instances where the library has supported and contributed to specific inquiry learning planning across your school.
Development of your library collection (books and online)
- Relate your summary of buying to your focus for the year (e.g. gaps in topic coverage relating to curriculum areas, areas of reading interest, support for reluctant readers) and identify topics where you will focus more heavily on quality e-resources.
- Acknowledge any donated resources
- If you have assessed or weeded part of the collection, mention what you have done (or are planning to do) as a result.
- Summarise any initiatives in developing your collection to promote reading for pleasure.
Evidence of library use
- Give a brief summary of issue statistics which show how library use is trending.
- Provide any other evidence such as increased use by classes (from the booking sheets), by individuals and small groups, and any increase in use of online resources (ie use which won’t be reflected in issue statistics) and relate to reasons why (eg library access to online primary source material to support inquiry topics, with heavier demand following meetings between librarian and teachers)
- If you have targeted any specific groups of library users this year (eg students or teachers) provide some data that shows how successful this has been.
- If you have changed any procedures or resourcing priorities as the result of user feedback from student or teacher surveys, provide brief summary. Detail could be included in appendix, or provided on request.
- Report on any impacts on library use resulting from online or social media initiatives, eg a library blog, especially if you are reaching new users.
- Summarise what you did for any special events or programmes, who was involved, and the impact on library use.
- If the library opening hours have changed, provide evidence of the impact on your users, including some user feedback if possible.
- Include any new developments in ICT in the library, eg software upgrades, web-based catalogue, library blog or use of social media.
- Acknowledge the contributions of those who have contributed to and managed the library presence on the school website.
- Summarise any issues around technical support, hardware upgrades or broadband speed, with how or whether these were resolved.
- Outline any ICT needs, planning for further online developments, and state whether the library is included in the school’s ICT plan.
Library staffing summary
- State who is on the library team, and their paid hours of work.
- Acknowledge the hours given by adult volunteers and student librarians.
- List any professional development or study undertaken by library staff this year, including Services to Schools' courses, other external courses, SLANZA meetings, network groups, and conferences attended
- If paid hours of staffing are insufficient, use evidence already provided to support your proposal for an increase in paid hours.
- Include reference to library building, or items of furniture and equipment that need upgrading or replacement. For all capital expenditure, check with your principal or executive officer as to what process your school uses for capital expenditure proposals.
- Acknowledge staff/class/local community contribution to library displays, artworks or other improvements they have contributed to the library environment.
- State the amount allocated for the maintenance, management and development of the library and its resources, excluding staff wages
- If you have received donations, or funding from any grants or fundraising events, state how these have been used
- Acknowledge the BOT funding.
- Include a record of expenditure (which can be attached in an appendix)
- State the level of funding required for the coming year to enable priorities to be achieved (your Budget proposal can be attached in an appendix).
The following information can be attached to the annual report where relevant:
- Record of expenditure for the last year
- Buying plan for the collection and detailed budget proposal for the coming year
- Library statistics
- Give your annual report a professional appearance. You could include photographs, charts or tables to show how your library is being used.
- Place detailed information in an appendix, as mentioned above.
- Present the report to the Principal and BOT, supported with an oral presentation
- Share the report with staff and students, and the school community
- File a copy with the library’s other formal documents
You are welcome to use and adapt the attached templates to meet the reporting needs within your school.