Supporting Australian book creators

By Laura Armstrong, Toni Jordan

A behind the scenes look at the Educational Lending Right program including comments from authors.

ELR's cornerstone

Australian school libraries are the cornerstone of the Educational Lending Rights (ELR), and in the coming weeks 600 schools will receive invitations, either by mail or email, requesting their participation in this year's survey. School library staff play a critical part in the data collection process – without their assistance to extract the book count data from their library management systems, the ELR scheme would not be possible.

Feedback from participants

We encourage all participating schools to provide feedback about their experience via a quick online form, to enable us to improve future ELR surveys.

Australian authors and illustrators value school libraries

When a school is invited to participate in the ELR school library survey, it is a fantastic opportunity to directly support Australian book creators and publishers. Many authors and illustrators have told us how much they appreciate the support they have received from school libraries, both as students and as book creators.

A message from Toni Jordan

Back in the 1970s when dinosaurs ruled the earth, my school library was an empty room with a few books lining the walls. By high school, the library was more focused towards individual subjects and specific assignments, with resources to provide constructive help. Library facilities now seem sparkling and so inviting by comparison: comfortable chairs, quiet desks and computers, and more books than even I could read. 

Some things haven't changed. For me, school libraries were always a place of refuge and imagination. Like many kids who loved to read, I spent a lot of time in my own head. Stories were never things that happened solely within the pages of a book; I often stopped reading entirely to imagine the story going off on a different tangent from the one the author intended.

Toni Jordan

My parents generally didn't mind me reading at home (although they made me stop every so often, certain I was doing permanent damage to my eyesight), but daydreaming was out of the question. I was vague and I was distracted, or I was plain insolent. I'm so grateful to all the librarians over the years who gave me a place to think, and to wonder. 

We have published more of these statements in previous issues of Connections and on the ELR website.

Image credit

  • Ruth Hartnup, Library,, CC BY 2.0
Laura Armstrong

Laura Armstrong

Communications & Projects Coordinator, SCIS

Education Services Australia

Toni Jordan

Toni Jordan