A Model Partnership: HPS and Hartford Public Library
In early 2019, HPS and Hartford Public Library (HPL) announced the Boundless partnership, an innovative collaboration that provides students at Rawson School access to their own library as well as additional learning resources in a community where libraries were becoming scarce.
The Boundless Library at Rawson is open to students and teachers during the school day (11 am-6 pm), and available to the wider community twice per week (Tuesdays and Thursdays, 3-6 pm). What the partnership entails:
- Boundless Universal Cards that use student IDs to access materials
- After-school and summer programming
- Public library partners, paired with Hartford schools to foster connections
- Library visits arranged by branch librarians
Through Boundless, Rawson students and teachers have access to print and digital reading materials. The Boundless website also offers links to a range of library resources, from early literacy activities to college prep materials.
The partnership’s impact is being evaluated and the HPL has already noted reading level improvement among fifth graders at Rawson. The partnership has also raised awareness about library resources in a community where some public library branches have closed.
The library is helping the district meet multiple goals, including increasing reading proficiency in third grade and supporting community schools, where the entire school community — students, teachers, families, and community members — can benefit. Most important, the presence of the library can instill an early love of reading, which boosts student success in school and beyond.
When the partnership was launched, HPS Superintendent Leslie Torres-Rodriguez said, “We are thankful to our partners-in-learning at the Hartford Public Library for working besides us, shoulder-to-shoulder, to increase educational access for our beautiful and capable students. Boundless provides greater access to paper books and digitla resources to help our students develop that crucial, lifelong love of reading.”
This effective partnership, which is a pilot that could be replicated in other schools, was recently highlighted in the School Library Journal.
Visit the partnership website: http://www.boundlesshartford.org/