The UK Pupil Library Assistant of the Year Award receives entries from school librarians who nominate the most amazing young people.
Consequently, the judging panel has an extremely difficult time, not only shortlisting the finalists but also in selecting the winner.
The standard of entries is always exceptional, showing a phenomenal range of tasks that pupils carry out within their school libraries, all with an enthusiasm and dedication that goes beyond what is expected of them. Their nominations demonstrate the benefits of this work – creating skills and abilities that impact on a young person’s personal and academic achievements.
After much discussion, a shortlist was reached of seven finalists who can all be proud of what they have accomplished within their own school libraries. All of the Headteachers and school librarians wrote high praise of each and every finalist. However, as with all awards, there can only be one winner.
When this young person began their school life, they knew no-one else at the school and hid in the library. Over time they developed and flourished, taking on the role of pupil librarian to become assured in their abilities and outspoken in their support.
The library has also enabled them to develop personal qualities, raising their self-confidence to take on a leadership role within the library and increasing their resilience so that they look after others before themselves. In the words of their Headteacher, they are a modest and humble superstar.
Thus it is with great pleasure that we announce that the winner of the UK Pupil Library Assistant 2019 is Rhiannon Salvin of Firth Park Academy.
UK Pupil Library Assistant of the Year 2019 – RHIANNON SALVIN
Rhiannon’s Headteacher, Mr Jones, says that she embodies the school’s core values of aspiration, respect and resilience and that she is as respected as any adult member of staff in her role as a student librarian.
School librarian, Mrs Edwards, states that Rhiannon is quiet and reserved but with a big heart who goes above and beyond her normal duties, and who underestimates herself and her skills. Over time her confidence has grown so that she is now comfortable talking to visiting parents, helping the diverse community of students with enquiries, ensuring a studious atmosphere during homework club and welcoming new students into the library.
In the past, Rhiannon has struggled with her reading and literacy skills but her use of the library has resulted in her reading tastes widening so that she is now quite knowledgeable about children’s literature and will happily recommend books to other students.
Mrs Edwards also says that Rhiannon is steadfast in her devotion to, and promotion of, the library and all it has to offer, bringing a single-minded eagerness to drive events forward.
The Judging Panel was delighted to shortlist Rhiannon as a finalist, and all agreed that she was a very deserving winner of the title of Pupil Library Assistant of the Year 2019.