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Developing the multicultural school library: Vahl Primary School, Oslo

Robert Vaagan (Associate Professor in the Faculty of Journalism, Library and Information Science, Oslo University College, Norway)
Gry Enger (Teacher and Librarian at Vahl Primary School, Oslo, Norway)

New Library World

ISSN: 0307-4803

Article publication date: 1 September 2004



Norway is becoming increasingly multicultural, and nowhere is this more apparent than in the capital Oslo. While immigrants only make up 7 per cent of the population at the national level, the figure is 20 per cent in Oslo, where in addition, 35 per cent of all pupils in primary and secondary schools belong to a linguistic minority. In Norway, and especially in the capital Oslo, multiculturalism is rapidly becoming the rule rather than the exception. At the same time reading tests show that immigrant and minority children have special problems. Successful integration of “new Norwegians” starts in the kindergartens and schools, including the school library. In this situation traditional librarianship training is inadequate. Improved pedagogical and communicational skills are required of the librarian in multicultural school libraries, and drama is a promising technique to improve language proficiency among pupils. The article presents some insights from Vahl Primary School in Oslo which has the highest concentration of multicultural pupils in the country – 95 per cent.



Vaagan, R. and Enger, G. (2004), "Developing the multicultural school library: Vahl Primary School, Oslo", New Library World, Vol. 105 No. 9/10, pp. 337-344.



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Copyright © 2004, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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