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LRSD-CALS Partnership Means 24-7 Access to Online Research and Resources
Little Rock School District students will have access to the Central Arkansas Library’s (CALS) digital resources any time and any place thanks to an enhanced partnership. LRSD Superintendent Mike Poore and CALS Executive Director Nate Coulter held a joint announcement about the new Tech Card program, designed to give students access to CALS’ virtual library. The announcement included the unveiling of artwork designed by Hall High School student Jennifer Mendoza that will be used in the tech card marketing campaign. Mendoza and Mann Magnet Middle School students, who helped promote the program through social media, were recognized during a Superintendent’s Citation Program for their impressive roles in helping their peers learn about the Tech Cards.
Students who don’t have a personal library card will be able to use the library system’s digital resources from school and home with the CALS tech card. A limited number of schools are participating in the pilot program with plans to provide tech cards to all LRSD schools and students by year’s end. Participating schools are Bale and Mabelvale Elementary Schools, Horace Mann and Dunbar Middle Schools, and Parkview and Hall High Schools.
The CALS website (cals.org) has been updated to include a student portal that directs students to appropriate content based on their grade levels. Materials include, but are not limited to, newspaper databases; learning tools such as Lynda.com; foreign language courses; ACT, SAT, and Arkansas driver’s test prep; music, movies, audio and ebooks for students of all ages.
The tech card differs from a traditional library card in that it is a special issue, assigned and distributed through schools. Students will not be allowed to borrow physical materials from the library system with the Tech Card, but will be able to access CALS electronic resources. Cards issued in the 2017-18 school year will expire September 1, but students enrolled in the 2018-19 school year will receive new cards in the fall. Students may still apply for a personal library card.