I love libraries. And I'm really angry that the UK government seems to value them so little - or that Ed Vaizey, the minister in charge of libraries, doesn't seem to care that they're being closed down, or starved of funds.
What’s so great about libraries?
A lot of people seem to be asking this at the moment. Here are some of my answers:
- Libraries teach and motivate children to read for pleasure
- Children who use libraries are twice as likely to be above-average readers
- Reading for pleasure gives children an advantage in school - even more than having well-educated parents in well-paid jobs
- Teenagers who read for pleasure go on to get better jobs than those who don’t
- Three in ten children own no books at all, but almost 80% of 5-10 year olds use the library, and children’s book-borrowing is going up year on year
- Reading enhances the ability to engage in a wide range of social situations
- One in six people in the UK struggle with literacy, and the UK’s rank in international literacy comparison tables has fallen since 2000