Liberty Ranch High School students have waited for two years to see their media center shelves stocked with books. Now that they’re finally there, they can’t check them out due to a lack of security measures.
The Galt Joint Union High School District is in the process of hiring a part-time library clerk to oversee the process, but has directed current funding be used to bring back teachers first, according to Superintendent Daisy Lee.
The library needs a check-out and return process to ensure the school doesn’t lose track of the new books, she said.
In the meantime, Lee said, students are turning to the Internet for research instead of books thanks to today’s technology advances.
“In today’s information and technology world, we need to have both technology and books,” she said.
The school was vying for a $5,000 grant from Raley’s grocery stores to purchase the security gate and check-out system for the library. However, the competition ended Sept. 30 without the school garnering the number of votes it needed to win.
It’s not clear why the system wasn’t built before the opening of the school’s media center, but budget cuts are likely to blame.
During the process of building the school, items were removed from the budget due to funding changes and budget priorities for the project as a whole.
At the beginning of March, approximately $95,000 worth of library books were ordered using alternative funds. They arrived the following month, according to Principal Brian Deis.
Liberty Ranch, the district’s newest campus, has suffered more than a few setbacks.
The district started construction on one building in 2008 when Liberty Ranch was being built, but had to delay the project because funds were frozen by the state in December of that year. The money was not released by the State Allocation Board until June 2010, and the school board voted to repay a bridge loan that it took out to pay for the building’s completion.
The school first opened in 2009 to freshman and sophomores. It will graduate its first class next spring.
Contact reporter Jennifer Bonnett at firstname.lastname@example.org.