Last Updated: Tuesday - 01/04/2011
December 24, 2001
Library draws students to study
Renovation boosts Picard library's appeal for students
WESTERN CATHOLIC REPORTER
EDMONTON — High school students at J.H. Picard School are spending a lot more time in the library since the kindergarten to Grade 12 French immersion school opened its renovated library two weeks ago.
"Now they love to come in," library technician Joann Biron said Dec. 18. "Everything is new. Everything is bright. Everything is more modern and they come in and they sit down, they read a magazine in the reading corner or they sit down and do their homework.
"It's kind of fun for me to see the change already. It's quite exciting."
As Biron explained, the students simply didn't like the old library. "It wasn't very appealling so they didn't want to come in the library to sit down and to read and to do research."
The library wasn't bright enough, had old furniture and had a closed-off office for the librarian. Magazines were in boxes rather than on racks.
In light of the situation, the school took action. In June 2000 it applied for a grant with the Edmonton Lottery Foundation and in November that year it received $75,000.
With the money the schools did some renovations, carpeted and painted the whole library and the adjacent computer lab and bought a lot of library furniture, including chairs, tables, computer desks, metal filing cabinets, metal shelving and magazine racks. Some of the shelving is rotary.
Biron estimates she spent at least $30,000 on furniture and close to $35,000 on construction. Whatever is left will be used to buy reference and fiction books in both English and French.
The library is much more appealling now, boasts the librarian as she points to the new entrance door, a glass and metal door surrounded by expensive-looking glass panels. It makes the whole area look bright and inviting.
Biron's old office is gone. It was demolished and converted into a reading area with comfortable easy chairs and magazine racks containing the latest news magazines.
Now Biron runs the library from behind a huge, modern library counter and reception area. "We are all very excited here," she said.
The library was officially opened Dec. 13 following a ribbon-cutting ceremony attended by government and Edmonton Catholic School officials.
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