• Oakdale Elementary School is committed to creating a strong school by building a strong library. It’s part of the Tuscaloosa City Board of Education members’ ambitious plan to create robust library collections. Currently, TCS libraries fall well below the standard for “exemplary” libraries based on the Alabama Department Education’s benchmarks. Of the system’s 18 libraries, none meet the designation--yet.


    The Board’s “Strong Libraries; Strong Schools.” campaign seeks to change that.  State funding ranging from $0 - approximately $1.50 per student per year over the last 10 years have left most school libraries across the state with collections far below the standards for size and average age.

     Oakdale Elementary School values reading deeply and is thankful for board leadership in calling attention to this great need faced by our school library. Although the school has always placed a strong emphasis on literacy, this focus on improving the library collection will help boost reading engagement and achievement.

    “We haven’t been able to buy new books in so long; our collection probably had books in it that our students’ grandparents checked out. Then this year TCS School Board provided us with enough funds to purchase so many new books. New fresh books that our students can get excited about reading. We just hope donors come forward so that we are able to keep our collection exciting.  It is like a miracle.” said Ms Melissa Kent, teacher librarian at Oakdale Elementary School.

    Strong Libraries; Strong Schools is a tiered giving campaign with recommended gifts ranging from $20 - $1,000.  In addition, the board is seeking 18 “Champions of Literacy” to make large, one-time donations to name each school library.  Online donations to the campaign can be made at www.tuscaloosacityschools.com/libraries.  More information about the campaign is available by contacting any board member or the Office of Special Programs at 205.759.3722.