Homewood-Flossmoor has been awarded a $4,999 grant from the Illinois State Library for the purchase of books at a variety of Lexile levels to support differentiated instruction, thanks to a successful grant proposal headed up by the school's librarians, Jane Harper and Alicia Rodriguez, assisted by Teresa Bagatella.
The grant — offered through the Back to Books program — is awarded by the Illinois State Library, a department of the Office of the Secretary of the State, using funds provided by the U.S. Institute of Museum and Library Services, under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA). It will be given to the school in May.
For the first time at the beginning of the 2017-18 school year, H-F students’ Lexile levels were identified with the plan to track students’ growth throughout their high school years. Lexile is a scientific approach to measuring both reading ability and the text demands of reading material. In an effort to assist teachers with the differentiation of instruction, librarians identified resources at a variety of Lexile levels to support students’ independent reading success.
“To accomplish this, we needed more books — more great fiction and informational texts that reflect the wide-ranging cultures and interests of our diverse student body and the incredibly creative efforts of our teachers,” says Harper. “This grant will allow us to do this.”
The H-F High School Library — located in the school's South Building — is one of the hubs of the school. It is home to more than 35,000 items, with approximately 15,000 items circulating each year. Approximately 70 classes visit the library each month during the school year, and the library is open before and after school for student and staff use. Staffed by professional librarians, the library also features 23 subscription databases and hundreds of ebooks.