Paying it Forward: Share the Love


Last year I was named the 2016 School Library Journal’s School Librarian of the Year.  It was one of the proudest moments of my teaching career.  One of the incredible components of the award was $2,500 to spend at the Scholastic Book Store.  I am fortunate to work in a district that believes in and supports my mission as a school librarian.  My library is well-funded and properly staffed.  Because of this, I wanted to do something different with the Scholastic funds.  I’ve decided that I will donate them to five schools in need; each school will be awarded $500.


Do you know a school who’s library could use these funds?


The most democratic way I could come up for distributing these funds is to create a Rafflecopter page.  Here’s how it works:  if you tweet about the contest and/or leave a comment on the blog, you will receive an ‘entry’ in the raffle.  On March 1st the Rafflecopter ‘engine’ will randomly choose five lucky recipients.  The more entries you have, the better your chances.  So, go ahead and submit an entry on behalf of your school or a deserving school you know about.  Click the link below to enter the raffle! Share with as many folks as you can and I can’t wait to see how this turns out!  Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

66 thoughts on “Paying it Forward: Share the Love

  1. Julie Keat

    I took over my school’s under-funded library, which is desperately in need of new current interesting books for K-4 students. I’ve used my own money to supplement but I’m a recent retiree who is volunteering, not earning. We could do so much good for our Title I school with the Scholastic gift. Thank you.


  2. I would purchase 5-6 copies of titles for lit circles. We have core novels for class sets, but our teachers have been clamoring for more recent and popular fiction for lit circles. I bought some earlier this year, but my tiny budget doesn’t go far. I am trying to bring more diversity to our collection, so these lit circle books would also reflect that goal. And Todd, you are a wonderful guy for doing this!


  3. Karyn Lewis

    I am a librarian at a middle school in Katy, TX. I do get money for books, however I have some gaps in series and popular titles that Scholastic could really help me with!


  4. Andrea Bolton

    This is a great opportunity for a deserving school. I work at a title I school who needs to rely on a lot of outside support. $500 would go a long way. This is very nice of you.


  5. Lynn Wilcox

    I would love to have funds to expand my fiction offerings and to add electronics to my Makerspace. I am a first year librarian and would be ecstatic to have extra funds to make my library future ready!


  6. Shannon Steimel

    How generous! I would love to win books for my school, Lift For Life Academy. Our students love reading but we don’t have a very big budget for books!


  7. Todd, what a wonderful gesture!! Thank you for the opportunity! I’d love to refresh my school’s library collection with current non-fiction books. About 74% of our students receive free or reduced price lunch. We are the largest and most urban elementary school in our district and many students move in and out of our school.Unfortunately we lose a lot of library books when kids move around. Thank you for your help!!


  8. Becky Greene

    Our school is a high-needs school and our students often do not own books of their own. As a reading incentive, we reward students with their choice of a new book. This money would add more books to our giveaway bins. Thanks so much for the wonderful opportunity!


  9. Belinda Rusnock

    The school library I am nominating is a wonderful community school that needs some updating of the collection. I am so blessed and honored to be part of the community at William Penn ES in Bethlehem, PA. I would use the $500 to buy some engaging new books for my eager students, and they would be so excited for some new books!


  10. Cheri Escobar

    I serve grades k-6 as a librarian in a title 1 school. The majority of the students I serve are deeply impacted by poverty and trauma. Last year we had 4 librarians. I’m bringing some stability to our program and making primarily social impacts.
    While I could use the funds, I’m excited for anyone of us to win! I love being surrounded by library professionals and seeing what others are doing.


  11. C Estrada

    It is so wonderful that you are sharing your award. Our world needs more thoughtfulness and kindness. I would like to recommend my school’s library. We have many newcomers to our country and school. We could use a bigger bilingual collection for our ELL students. They have an amazing teacher and I would love for them to have more books to support their learning.


  12. It would be so nice to be able to give back to the high school I went to. Katherine Anne Porter is a charter school in Wimberley, Texas. It has really come a long way. I haven’t visited in years, but I am hearing good things all the time. They now have a recycling program, organic gardening, organized sports etcetera. I went the first year they opened, and they have come a long way. Such a caring faculty and nurturing environment. They are all strangers to me now, (except for an old friend who is now the superintendent) but I care for them just the same.


  13. April Lencioni

    Such generosity! I work in an elementary school library that has pretty outdated nonfiction- I would love to update biographies and general science!


  14. Thank you so much for paying it forward. I am a public librarian, but work with a alternative campus in our school district that does not have a budget for a library. SMH. $500 could enrich their small library (started by a valiant teacher) for this campus. These students are placed there due to behavioral issues, however the high rate of poverty in family funds AND reading skills is often a common denominator. These students deserve to have access to books, and anytime I can aid them in updating their collection, I go for it.


  15. Lynae Puckett

    I would use the money for new early chapter books. Our library doesn’t have an adequate supply of books that move students from easy readers to full-fledged chapter books.


  16. Mary Gensel

    I work for Pierre Moran Middle School in Elkhart, IN. 70% of our students are on free and reduced lunches. 40% are students in ELL. With what resources we have, we try to reach students with different interests, reading levels, and languages. The students love Scholastic books and every bit helps.


  17. I am a elementary librarian that travels to 5 (yes, 5!) rural elementary libraries in NH. This generous gift would allow me to provide more resources to out amazing staff and students! Crossing my fingers!!


  18. amanda

    Todd, this is such a generous thing to do with your winnings. Even well-funding libraries can find a use for more money, so thank you for offering to share with others.

    I am starting an after school book-club at my daughter’s elementary school (for 4th and 5th grades), and this money be perfect for purchasing book club books!


  19. Hallie

    This is awesome and so generous! I know a library that could use more diverse books to be the windows and mirrors to our middle school population!


  20. Gale Morton

    I would use the funds to purchase diversity books. We are trying to increase our picture book collection so that children see themselves in the pages of the books. So books on different types of families, transgender, LGBTQ topics, different races, that sort of thing.


  21. Sarah L. Horwath

    This is so wonderful! If my school won the $500, I would put it toward birthday books for our students. All of our students receive a brand new book on their birthday. We continue this tradition at our school because for many of our students, these are the only books that they can call their own.


  22. Debra Reynolds

    Humboldt Elementary is a title 1 school with no funding for books for the library. We have many students that this is their only resource for books. I would love to have $500 to add to their library to enrich their lives.


  23. Talk about paying it forward! If my school is fortunate enough to win one of these generous prizes, I would use it to give our collection a much needed boost in the 500s. This year we seem to have quite a few students who can’t get enough books about space, dinosaurs, insects and sharks. Thank you for the chance and congratulations to whatever schools are chosen!


  24. Pam Ping

    As media specialist/ librarian at a Title 1 school that serves grades 6-8, I would use the funds to add a selection of books on social issues that effect the lives of students at my school. Win or not, thank you for the opportunity and I agree with Cheri. All the entries sound amazing. Good luck to all.


  25. Sara L Tait

    Riverside Elementary in Oregon is a bilingual Title 1 school that needs more books in Spanish; it would be great if this could help out. Thank you for doing this for students.


  26. Barbara Thrasher

    I’m a fifth grade teacher and my school could certainly benefit from your generosity. Somerville Road Elementary, is a Title I school with a high number of English Language Learners. We would love to add to our library and also provide students with supplementary books for small groups and thematic school wide units. We may even use this to expand our summer reading options. Thank you for the opportunity!


  27. I entered this new role as district librarian this year after teaching high school English here for fourteen years. We never seem to have enough money in the budget to provide all three buildings with our ever-expanding wish lists. This gift would greatly help and it would also be deeply appreciated!


  28. Lisa

    I would sure love to win for our libraries! My fingers will be crossed! If I won I would spend it on our biographies section, which is horribly out dated.


  29. Such kindness and generosity! Freeman Elementary Library would use the money to purchase board books to use with the 125 Pre-K students we are adding to our school next year! We currently only have about 20 board books, so we definitely need to boost our collection! Thank you for the opportunity to enter this raffle! 🙂


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