Downtown School Adjusts To The Loss Of Library Access During Renovations

Downtown School Adjusts To The Loss Of Library Access During Renovations

10:01am Oct 15, 2014
Delor Williams teaches second grade at The Downtown School. For 19 years, she's led classes to the Forsyth County Public Central Library for films and to check out books. The central library closes October 15, 2014 for a 2-year renovation project.
Kathryn Mobley

The Forsyth County Central Library in downtown Winston-Salem is closing Wednesday for renovations and an area school is forced to find alternatives. 

The library is in downtown Winston Salem and since 1991 it has been a resource for teachers at The Downtown School, such as Delor Williams, who teaches second grade.

In Delor's class, there’s a cozy reading corner with a dozen or more books. But the 19-year-veteran says she relies heavily on the central public library’s films and books to support classroom lessons.

“It’s difficult for the children because it’s taking a part of our community away, a part of our resource,” explains Williams. She says parents are donating more books to many of the classrooms during the renovation period.Jevonte Jackson, who is 7 years old, and other students say they miss walking the few blocks to 'their' library on Fifth Street, every month.

“I like walking to the library because when I get there I get to read a lot of books and I like reading," says Jackson. "Also, you get stronger when you exercise and keep on walking." But Jackson doesn't like that he will not be able to use the central location for two years. "That’s like the whole two school years and then it’ll be summer."Nan LaRose, director of the central library's Children’s Department, says a book mobile and librarian visits will continue giving the school access to its materials. She also believes during this renovation period, students can learn new skills. 

“We do have a lot of on-line resources and access to information that way," says LaRose. "This will be a wonderful skill for children to learn as library users into the future.”

It's an adjustment for students like Dimitrios Lambiris. He'll miss checking out his favorite book series, "Diary of a Wimpy Kid" and "Captain Underpants". But he isn’t put off by the two year wait. “I think it’s OK because they’re probably going to make it better.”

Support your
public radio station