January 21, 2022

Philadelphia: “Budget Crisis Shutters Libraries at 2 Top Schools”

UPDATE October 15: Two shuttered school libraries to reopen (via Philly Inquirer)

Two school libraries, shuttered last month due to budget cuts, will reopen Tuesday after a donation from an anonymous donor.

As The Inquirer reported last month, Central High and Masterman, two of the city’s most prestigious schools, closed their libraries because the district did not fund librarians.

Principals of the two schools, magnets that take in top students from across the city, lamented the closures, and said the budget cuts had taken aim at the very heart of their institutions.

After reading the newspaper story about the library closures, the donor decided to contribute $205,000 to help them reopen, said Fernando Gallard, spokesman for the Philadelphia School District.

Filed on September 14:

From the Philadelphia Inquirer/Philly.com:

When Central High School opened its new library in 2005 – a $4.5 million research and media hub funded by alumni – Apple named it a national model.

Students visited it more than 147,000 times last year, more than 800 visits a day.

Masterman School’s library, also bolstered by fund-raising, bustled with students, too, from early morning till late afternoon.

But now both libraries – the academic hearts of two of Philadelphia’s most prestigious schools – have been shuttered.


Principals at Central and Masterman, magnet schools that take in top students from across the city, are trying to figure out how to reopen the libraries in a limited way. Teachers still will take classes to the libraries. But the libraries won’t be able to circulate books or offer students the expertise of their former librarians.

“She was really the biggest resource in the library,” Evelyn Tsisin, a senior at Masterman, said of librarian Bernadette Kearney.

Read the Complete Article

See Also: From Philadelphia Weekly: “Closing School Libraries? This Means War”

See Also: In Philadelphia, School Librarians Still In Flux (via School Library Journal; August 22, 2013)

See Also: Philadelphia Begins Laying Off School Librarians (via School Library Journal; June 13, 2013)

From Harrisburg, PA

All Gone! Harrisburg School Library Staff Eliminated With Recent Layoffs  (via School Library Journal; August 13, 2013)

About Gary Price

Gary Price (gprice@mediasourceinc.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.