Homewood-Flossmoor Community High School has been awarded a $4,999 state grant for the purchase of books at a variety of Lexile levels to support differentiated instruction.
Lexile is a scientific approach to measuring both reading ability and the text demands of reading material.
H-F librarians Jane Harper and Alicia Rodriguez, assisted by Teresa Bagatella, worked on the grant application. The money will be available in May.
The grant — offered through the Back to Books program — is awarded by the Illinois State Library, a department of the Office of the Secretary of the State. The state agency is using funds provided by the U.S. Institute of Museum and Library Services, under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act.
For the first time at the beginning of the 2017-18 school year, H-F students’ Lexile levels were identified with the plan to track students’ growth throughout their high school years. In an effort to assist teachers with the differentiation of instruction, librarians identified resources at a variety of Lexile levels to support students’ independent reading success.
“To accomplish this, we needed more books — more great fiction and informational texts that reflect the wide-ranging cultures and interests of our diverse student body and the incredibly creative efforts of our teachers,” Harper said. “This grant will allow us to do this.”
The H-F library, staffed by professional librarians, has more than 35,000 items, with approximately 15,000 items circulating each year. In addition, it has 23 subscription databases and hundreds of ebooks.
Approximately 70 classes visit the library each month during the school year, and the library is open before and after school for student and staff use.