Scotland pilots automatic child library membership

Scotland pilots automatic child library membership

Pilot projects are to be developed in every council area in Scotland to enrol children automatically as library members.

According to a BBC report, the initiative, backed by £80,000 of funding, will be promoted by Scotland's first minister Nicola Stugeon at Glasgow's Mitchell Library later today (25th August).

The pilot schemes will give children library cards either at birth, or at the age of three or four, or in the school entry class Primary 1.

Glasgow's pilot will target 2,000 pupils in six areas with literacy challenges. From 7th September, every baby registered in the Glasgow area will be given a library card by the registrar.

Sturgeon commented: "Our libraries are often the hub of a local comunity - providing vital access to information and resources that people would otherwise not have. Now, thanks to £80,000 Scottish government funding, every local authority in Scotland will trial methods to give children automatic membership to their local library."

She added: "Libraries can empower communities - often in our most deprived areas where we know that young people can have lower levels of literacy and numeracy."

The initiative comes shortly after Westminster education minister Nicky Morgan announced a "mission" to improve literacy, to include "support" for The Reading Agency's goal of getting every eight-year-old enrolled at their local library. The initiative attracted a mixed response from library campaigners.