I have arrived home most nights this week feeling very grimy/dusty. I look forward to a shower. I still have a cough that is worse at the end of the day. The reason for this is that I have been trying to do a combined stocktake of our fiction collection and at the same time cull out the old, the tatty and the unread novels. It is sometimes had to get rid of books that maybe classics in their fields but, if they have not been read for more than 5 years, we have a policy of removing them from the collection. Some I am quite happy to see the last of when they are too damaged to keep (a good excuse). Some of the missing titles are parts of series and I have to find out whether or not I can replace the missing volumes or get rid of the whole series (or trilogy). I have on occasion in the past gone to second-hand books shops to replace out-of-print books. It is at this time of the year I understand just how many books in the collection are out at any one time. Each year when we have sorted the books, we will take those that are is reasonable to various charity shops. We have been told that the fiction always sells well (especially when it is 50cents or $1). Stock taking is such an “Old” library thing to do but it really gives you a feel for the books and what the boys are reading. No print out or computer screen does it with quite the same feel or offer the same understanding that this hands-on approach does. It is also necessary if we are going to have a collection that is relevant to the students, and the space for it!
We have also had to send a lot of letters home to try to encourage boys to bring back the books they still have in their possession. This always brings mixed reactions. Some parents are every supportive and others are less so.
I have also been writing reports for my Pastoral care group. I meet with these boys every morning. My pastoral care group has 4 boys from each of the year levels (7-12). They arrive in my group in year 7 and we are together until they leave at the end of year 12. I therefore get to know these boys and their parents very well. It is good to be able to get the parent perspective about our schools procedures and policies.
A video about how parents can help create great schools from Heidi Hass Gable. Heidi is a mother, from a school parents group, who has eloquently looked at the subject of a child’s education from a family perspective. It is very thoughtful and really puts the case for the parents and the school to work together in educating the young people we both have in our care.