Interesting to read this morning that scrutiny is being given to the UK government’s policy on closing school libraries: Children’s laureates demand UK government investigate school library closures.
Hopefully, this campaign will have an impact, but the Tories, though happy to be surrounded by books themselves in their various properties, have no intention of allowing others the same luxury. Libraries are subject now to the same market forces that try to govern every other aspect of our lives where cost and value are completely divorced.
But what really struck me at was the unpleasant memory of my secondary school librarian, who was such an unpleasant character that I never wanted to go near the library. Luckily I had a great local one in Wandsworth which I’d visit after school and on weekends (though this has long since been closed by the Tory council).
I suppose that enough time has passed to mention her by name. Miss O’Brian was a bespectacled, porcine creature without any hint of charm, feminine or otherwise (hence, I suppose the ‘Miss’). Almost as wide as she was tall, she’d peer out through the window in her office only to come scurrying out if there was any indication that you might be enjoying your time among the books. Like a good many teachers I’ve come across, she seemed to be one of those people who just hated children. But, she was accorded the same status as the teaching staff, so we all just had to put up with her bullying.
hope assume that she’s dead now. Dead along with all the joy she killed while in a job that could have conveyed such happiness and fulfilment to a lot of kids. She looked the type that would go home to an equally fat cat who would spend its evenings watching her making sweaty love to a wheel of cheese, waiting for her tiny pumpkin seed of a heart to be overcome by an infarction, so that it could dine on her fatty bits until the neighbours became alerted by the smell.
Or something like that.
So, libraries I love. But school libraries, I just want to love.