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I need the help of every school media specialist out there!  Our current
intermediate school (grades 7-8) is being converted to a middle school
(grades 6-8).  The library is presently being expanded to handle the load,
but we are running into problems with the administration and planning.

At the moment, they are more interested in adding more tables for faculty
meetings than purchasing shelving for new books.  Also, there is no
scheduled increase in the library budget, so therefore we will not have the
funds available for purchase books for the new sixth grade classes.  The
administration is saying that we can get the books from the current four
elementary grades.  The one problem with that is, however, the elementary
schools still need them since, for example, American history is covered in
two years:  first half fifth grade, second half sixth grade.  For fiction,
etc. - how in the world can the elementary schools parts with their
items that are used on a daily basis?

In terms of staffing, this is like a roller coaster.  First they were going
to have two full time librarians, then one full time/one part time, then
one full time librarian/one full time aid, then one full time library/one
part time aid, then one full time librarian with no aid.  This is getting
ridiculous.  We need to know what other schools out there that are considered
relatively 'rich' districts have available.  The majority of our students
are not financially hurting and thus the school district has close to a
$40 million budget for six schools.  The school will actually end up having
more students than the present high school (grades 9-12) since the current
6,7,8 grades are larger than average.  The high school has two full tiem
librarians (one print, one A/V) and two full-time aids.  As I said, this is
becoming insane.

If you were going to plan an upgrade to a library, what would you do?
Budget increase (percentage)?  New furniture (the current furniture falls
on students it is so unstable, but there is talk of not replacing it)?
New shelving (it is old metal shelving that has rusted and will not fit
many of our books)?  More computers?  Aids?  Librarians?  Staff?

PLEASE HELP - we are desperate as the situation as reached the point of
insanity.  The furniture people were in about a week and a half ago, looked
at the architect's plans, and asked if the furniture would be needed for
9/95 or 9/96?  The principal told him 9/94 - the salesman couldn't believe
the poor quality of the plans.  Please help in any way you can!

Thank You!

Michael Pafumi

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