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Friday, September 19, 2014

FCPS lauds Falls Church High School library

A discussion with authors fills the Falls Church High School library. [FCHS photo]
Students at Falls Church High School, one of the smallest high schools in Fairfax County Public Schools, were some the top users of their school library during the 2013-14 school year, according to an FCPS press release. The school averaged 4.8 books per student, compared to a countywide average of 2.3.

FCHS librarians Laura Potocki and Carrie Kausch have been working over the past couple of years to make the library as welcoming as possible. The library is open 6:45 a.m. to  4 p.m. They’ve been awarded a grant from Books Across America to establish ReadBox, modeled on RedBox DVD and game rental machines. Students can pick and drop off books at the ReadBox in a busy hallway without having to step into the library.

A grant from the Mosher Foundation enabled the library to add foreign language books (Arabic, Chinese, Vietnamese, and Korean) to its collection. With such a diverse student population, the librarians wanted to send the message that everyone is welcome and encouraged to read. 

Other grants supported efforts to help students stay fit while reading. Four exercise bikes in the library allow students to burn off some calories as they read. They can also sit on fitness balls while using the computers.

Potocki and Kausch brought in authors – Meg Medina, Jenna Black, and Cristin Terril – to speak with students in a group and on a one-on-one basis during the past year about careers in reading and writing.

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