PALM SPINGS — The Palm Springs Public Library and Palm Springs Unified School District have formed a partnership using ebooks and e-audiobooks to increase access to more reading materials for middle and high school students.

This collaboration is desisgned  to promote literacy and digital learning by combining the district’s and the library’s digital reading resources in one app. As a result, students learn anytime, anywhere because of the convenience, ease of reading on-the-go and the inherent popularity of technology.

The school-library partnership provides safe access to hundreds of age-appropriate titles for students’ use in school, from home and anywhere 24/7. Through Sora, the student reading app, students can borrow the school library’s collection of classroom and pleasure reading, and can also access Palm Springs Public Library’s young adult digital collection.

In addition, Sora supports teachers by offering education-specific tools like achievements, exportable notes, and reading progress that encourage individualized learning.

“This is a great opportunity for the Library to augment the school library’s collections and support students’ learning at home during this unprecedented time of sheltering in place during the COVID-19 crisis. We hope that all students will eventually get a library card but until then this gives them easy access to our online ebook resources, and at no additional cost to the Library or School District; it’s a win-win for everyone!” Jeannie Kays, Director of Library Services at the Palm Springs Public Library, said in a prepared statement.

“SORA has been a great resource for our middle and high school students,” PSUSD Executive Director of Student Learning Mike Walbridge said in a news release. “When we first set this up, students instantly had access to not only the e-books that Palm Springs USD had purchased but to many additional titles in the Palm Springs Public Library e-book collection. While we saw this at the time as a great way to increase our students’ access to books, during the school closure it has become an essential supplement to our efforts to keep our students engaged in their learning.”

The Sora app was named one of TIME’s Best Inventions 2019 and is available for Palm Springs Unified School District middle and high school students to download through the Apple App Store and Google Play Store, and on Chromebooks that support the Google Play Store. It is also available for use in web browsers. The address can be found by clicking here.

Local residents of the Coachella Valley with a Palm Springs Public Library card can access the Library’s complete e-book and e-audiobook collection through the award-winning Libby app. Readers can use Libby on any major device or computer, including Apple (R), Android™, Chromebook™ and Kindle(R) (US only).

If you don’t have a Palm Springs Public Library card you can apply for a Temporary Digital Card online by clicking here, click on ‘My Account’ and the click on ‘click here to register’ and submit the form online. A library staff person will process your form and email you your digital library card number and password, good for 3-months.

Image Sources

  • Sora: Shutterstock