The drive for school libraries in South Africa: intersections and connections

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Peer-Reviewed Research
  • SDG 4
  • Abstract:

    This paper traces the important developments in school librarianship in South Africa since 2007, during which time the drive to address huge backlogs in school library provision has gained momentum - largely, it argues, from the intersections of two phenomena: the Library and Information Services (LIS) Transformation Charter; and Equal Education, a civic-action NGO campaigning on behalf of school libraries. South African youth face daunting challenges, and their schooling is perhaps where the heritage of apartheid is most visible. The lack of libraries, it is argued, has undermined the attempts at curricular reform since the late 1990s. The daunting backlogs in school library provision mean that innovative models of service will be needed that cut across existing divisions. Given the impact of the lack of school libraries on all sectors of LIS, the paper examines the recommendations in the LIS Transformation Charter that South African LIS should turn to the concept of ecosystem to provide the framework for concerted action.