Peterborough primary school wins £15,000 library makeover

Pupils from Middleton Primary School, Bretton taking part in a sign and sing world record attempt accross the country. ENGEMN00120121002121251
Pupils from Middleton Primary School, Bretton taking part in a sign and sing world record attempt accross the country. ENGEMN00120121002121251
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A primary school has won a £15,000 makeover for its library as part of an initiative to improve pupils’ literacy.

Middleton Primary School in South Bretton, Peterborough, won a competition run by the National Literacy Trust and the School Library Association, as well as furniture company BookSpace, which is designing and funding the renovation.

The project is part of the National Literacy Trust Hub in Peterborough – an initiative to raise literacy levels in the area.

Construction work is due to start in the school summer holidays and the new reading space is expected to open to pupils during the autumn term.

Middleton Primary School impressed the judges with innovative ideas for a space which celebrates reading.

In its entry the school wrote that its current library, which is located in a busy corridor, has “no sense of the wonder of reading at all.”

Middleton’s vision for the new space it has chosen, which is located in a quiet area of the school, includes supporting positive reading role models for children.

Parents will be invited into the school to read with their children and there will also be an audio area where teachers and children can record and listen to stories.

As well as the library makeover, Middleton will receive advice and staff training from the School Library Association to ensure its new reading space becomes an example for other schools across the country to learn from.

The judging panel for the award comprised of BookSpace managing director Helen Thomas, School Library Association director Tricia Adams and the National Literacy Trust’s Hubs manager Jason Vit.

Middleton’s headteacher Kathy McDermott said: “We are absolutely delighted to have been given such a wonderful opportunity to create a new reading space for our school community.

“I have no doubt that this exciting space in our school will inspire us all. We cannot wait to get started.”

The National Literacy Trust’s Peterborough Hub manager, Sally Atkinson, said: “The library makeover is a fantastic opportunity for Middleton Primary School to create an outstanding school library to encourage a culture of reading for enjoyment amongst pupils which is so important for boosting literacy levels.”

Ms Thomas said: “Middleton Primary School stood out for me because of their exciting plans to combine the networks they already have in place with lots of new ideas to reach their ultimate goal of enabling their children to become independent readers.”

Ms Adams said: “We’re delighted we will be working with Middleton Primary School to develop its new library for the benefit of the pupils and the community with BookSpace and the Peterborough Literacy Campaign.

“The School Library Association is committed to supporting everyone involved with school libraries, promoting high quality reading and learning opportunities for all.

“Congratulations to Middleton Primary School which has shown its commitment to succeed against a strong field of high quality entries – now let’s make the library happen!”

The Peterborough Literacy Campaign is an initiative working in partnership with Peterborough City Council and other local partners, including Peterborough United, Stagecoach and Vivacity, to raise awareness of the importance of literacy skills and extend the reach of literacy support in the district.

More information can be found at www.peterboroughliteracy.co.uk.