Clifton Park

Shenendehowa debuts new high school library

Some of the new cooperative work space at the Shen library is pictured.
Some of the new cooperative work space at the Shen library is pictured.

CLIFTON PARK — Shenendehowa High School’s new and upgraded library opened its doors to students first thing Monday morning.

The school’s library had been housed in a small theater room while the new space was being built.

The library upgrade is part of a $16.6 million school district project approved by voters in May 2016. The work has also included extensive roof and floor repairs on a few of the district’s schools.

On Monday, district staff and students gathered in front of new glass panel doors in the library and noted that, though the path to fruition was a long one, the new facility was a reflection of the district as a whole moving into modern times. 

The original library was built in 1970. The current facility is home to 30,000 books, but it includes 350 seats that are lightweight and easily moved, two multi-use library classrooms and a virtual reality computer system donated by GlobalFoundaries.

To accommodate the district’s 1:1 Initiative, which ensures every student is provided with ether a Chromebook or an iPad, all areas in the library function as either a cooperative work space or a place where students can hook up their electronic devices to do work.

Librarian Steve Davidson said the library has improved lighting. The ability to easily reconfigure the library’s space is also something staff had wanted for a while.

“We couldn’t do things like that before,” Davidson said on Monday.

Board of Education President Bob Pressly said some people had expressed skepticism about the need for a new library, claiming ready access to the internet is just as beneficial to students — and cheaper.

Pressly said the new library goes beyond internet access and provides students with crucial educational resources to help students thrive both in school and at home.

“There are so many things that need to be understood,” he said to library staff. “Please keep doing what you’re doing.”

District Superintendent L. Oliver Robinson said, “This is a space that every kid can come into and thrive and be who they are,” Robinson said.


Categories: News, Saratoga County, Schenectady County, Your Niskayuna

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