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the bolles school
New Chapter for Bolles Libraries
students in pratt library

“This is different. But I’ve never liked to be stagnant – change helps us evolve.”

Bolles Middle School Teacher-Librarian Jaime Sanborn, like her librarian counterparts on the Whitehurst, Ponte Vedra Beach and San Jose campuses, is upbeat and ready for a school year like no other. She has been busy reevaluating or canceling library events and reassessing how to get online learners, and more students on campus, better connected to Pratt Library’s many resources. She is not alone on this shelf. All four Bolles librarians have been working hard this summer to re-think library access, purpose and resources to best suit student use during a pandemic. This year, without question, is a new chapter for Bolles librarians.

“At the upper school, our biggest adjustment was to reduce seating capacity upstairs and downstairs, including the study rooms and Swisher classroom,” said Bolles Upper School Librarian Kate Moody. Moody also teaches AP seminar and AP Research. This is her fourth year at Bolles.

She explained how students now enter the library and scan QR codes to indicate their arrival or use of study space. This new policy helps the School keep up with contact tracing through the day. 

“It’s really difficult to see the library’s student traffic slowdown in the physical sense,” Moody said. “On the other hand, our online library usage has skyrocketed, and I’m super jazzed about that.” 

screenshot of library

The Swisher Library’s most popular digital services are the research suite, eBooks, audio books and reader’s advisory.  “Turns out the students are still researching, working on projects and enjoying books online.”  Visit Swisher online:

Nearby, the Copeland Library on the Bolles Lower School Whitehurst Campus is using as many digital platforms as possible this school year. Whitehurst Teacher-Librarian Jennifer Moore said students will be able to check out both audio and e-books from home and at school. Moore also is allowing students to meet in the library using proper physical distancing protocols and check out one book per rotation.

“Our at-home learners will be reserving and picking up books when they come to pick up work packets,” Moore said. She added students will continue to read class novels, learn library skills and talk about other cultures and peoples of the world as part of their curriculum. Visit the Copeland Library here:

Christina Karvounis, teacher-librarian and information specialist on the Bolles Lower School Ponte Vedra Beach Campus, is taking the library to the classroom and outdoors and has postponed popular annual events like the book fair and author visits until 2021. She is resolute in her plans to bring the library out into the school community in new, creative ways.

kids in outdoor library

“My goal is to inspire a love of reading, build excellent digital citizenship skills and practice good habits in information-seeking and use,” said Karvounis, who now visits each classroom for their library time. “The spirit of the library will thrive among our learning community.”

During her newly redesigned library times, Karvounis said she will continue to share literature and offer opportunities to build understandings of identity, information and community through the lens of The Bolles Way. The Ponte Vedra Beach Library collection will continue to be made available to students of all ages. This year, conversations around safe information use, well-being and inclusion will take place regularly via literature and programming. Visit the school library site here:

“Students PK-5 will check out books! PK-1 students will enjoy librarian-curated selections while students in Grades 2-5 will practice viewing the catalog and making requests via a digital form,” Karvounis explained. Audiobooks, Ebooks and databases for pleasure and informational reading will be available for students in Grades 2-5. Any borrowed books this school year are returned to the QBin – a quarantine bin where books will “take a nap” for three days to ensure any viruses cannot be spread.

Back in the Pratt Library on the Bolles Middle School Bartram Campus, librarian Sanborn said there are a few obvious changes this year. First, the library can hold far fewer students than years past. And like Karvounis’ “QBin” process, books checked out have to stay in a Quarantine Bin for 72 hours following check out. Lastly, the Pratt Library looks a little different as she is not doing book displays this year because “they get touched a lot.” Instead, Sanborn has started making Video Displays to feature new books.

“This is a fun way to share the collection and might actually be more effective,” said Sanborn, who also teaches Grade 6 Information Literacy Enrichment and a Grade 7-8 Information Literacy Elective. The video displays are another way to reach at-home learners and augment the library’s digital access. The library also offers SORA, an eBook and Audiobook platform. All of the library’s academic databases can be accessible from home as well. Students learning from home classrooms can schedule appointments with Sanborn for research assistance, readers advisory and help.

Unchanged is the library’s focus on diversity, equity and inclusion in its curating, Sanborn said, as she ensures the library can be relied upon to reflect the lives of the entire world community.

“Overall, while there is a lot to process,” Sanborn said. “I am just so happy to see my students- both in person and on my screen.” Visit the Pratt Library online here:

kids in library