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Someone You Should Know: Helping students succeed

Updated: Jun. 2, 2021 at 5:58 PM CDT
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SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (Dakota News Now) - It’s now easier for some kids to get books from Siouxland Libraries, thanks to a new program run by one of the libraries’ staff members.

“I got involved in the programming aspect of it and I just saw that libraries had more to offer than just reading. And Then, with my education background, I saw the impact that they could have on people’s lives.”

Those are some of the things Lucy Steiger loves about her job as a librarian. This year she’s making an impact being the project lead of a new program, the Student Success Card. It breaks down a barrier at Siouxland Libraries that was stopping some kids from being able to take books home.

“In order for a minor under 16 to get a library card, they have to come in with a parent who signs off on the card as being financially responsible in case of lost materials or fines. A lot of times we get kids who will walk to the library or come with a sibling or come with a babysitter and they don’t have their parent to come with them to sign up for a card.”

Now, if kids are at the library without mom or dad and they don’t already have a library card, they can sign up on their own for a Student Success Card. They can use the card to check out up to two books or magazines at a time.

Siouxland Libraries started the Student Success Card in May as a pilot program, distributing the cards to kids in three Sioux Falls elementary schools. Lucy says they’ve already seen a good turnout.

“It’s been three weeks since the cards were handed out at schools and we’ve had over 60 kids come in, so we’re thinking it’s been successful so far.”

She’s noticed how the kids respond to having the card.

“I’ve been able to see kids coming into the library and they are just so, so excited to have their own library card and to be able to check things out. Whether it’s they weren’t able to before because they couldn’t come with mom or dad or because they just always used mom or dad’s card. But now it’s like this is their own thing.”

Beyond just the excitement, the program is also serving an important purpose now that school is out for the summer.

“And it’s just a good way to prevent the summer slide. When you’re out of school and not necessarily doing those educational things each day it’s easy to regress back a little bit. If you’re reading all summer it helps prevent that.”

“They’re just so excited and just seeing that is worth having this program.”

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