Tuesday, November 21, 2006

East Lake opens campus library

The East Lake Elementary School library officially opened its doors with a ribbon cutting ceremony on Wednesday, Nov. 15.

"We can say that we care for our kids and value learning, but by creating this library we have shown, with definition and resolution, that we mean what we say," said Konocti school board president Carolynn Jarrett.

Jarrett recounted the story of Benjamin Franklin and 49 other citizens who joined forces in 1730 to create the first library in the American colonies. Each donated 40 shillings toward creating the Library Company of Philadelphia and additonally donated the annual contribution of 10 shillings apiece. "They banded together collectively to do what would have been impossible for one man to do alone."

Jarrett compared those early subscribers with Konocti district voters who, in November 2004, approved the passage of Measure G, an $18.5-million general obligation bond that provided funds for the library 's construction as well as for other specified projects. The library building occupies 2,260 square feet.

A successful grant application, prepared by Karen MacDougall, filled the new library with books, computers and teleconferencing technology. "We are very fortunate to have all these new books," said librarian Sharon Kimsey.

District Superintendent Dr. Louise Nan prefaced the ribbon cutting by reiterating the process with which the district created its strategic plan -- applying this sequence to the creation of the East Lake Library . A vision grew from beliefs and in turn inspired goals and the final action plan.

Local author Linda Altman read from "Amelia's Road," a story about a young migrant worker who longs for a permanent place where she can belong and can have a home.

Brad Onorato, field representative for U.S. Rep. Mike Thompson, conveyed the Congressman's wishes, saying that among all the occasions at which he represents Thompson, "no events are so satisfying as the dedication of a new library ."