This paper aims to describe the effects of the Dutch policy program the Library at School on primary school pupils’ leisure book reading and attitude towards reading books, in the first year of the nationwide implementation of the program.Design/methodology/approach – In monitoring the effectiveness of the Library at School, online questionnaires were administered to students (grades 2‐6), teachers and reading‐media consultants. The study is based on data collected in the school year 2011‐2012 from a sample of 4,682 students from 229 classes, with 284 teachers of 68 schools.
Multilevel regression analyses show that effects of the Library at School on reading attitude and leisure reading cannot yet be discerned in 2011‐2012, although slightly positive univariate effects are found.
As yet, the number of participating schools is limited, hence statistical power is low on that level. Whether the sample can be considered representative for all Dutch primary schools is not certain.
The findings suggest that a school library in itself is not sufficient to promote book reading in leisure time. The role of the reading‐media consultant in facilitating both teachers and learners might have to be strengthened.
This study gives a first glimpse at the effects of the program the Library at School on the reading attitude and leisure reading of primary school students in The Netherlands. The continuous monitoring approach employed is new and can be helpful for similar policy programs in other countries.
Huysmans, F., Kleijnen, E., Broekhof, K. and van Dalen, T. (2013), "The Library at School: effects on reading attitude and reading frequency", Performance Measurement and Metrics, Vol. 14 No. 2, pp. 142-156. https://doi.org/10.1108/PMM-05-2013-0013
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