Is Our Library Really a Library?


Picture by Jahninna Alegre

By Pranesh Kumar, Staff Writer

The Quartz Hill High School library, when compared to many other sites on campus, stands out as one of the most widely popular buildings. Renovated as recently as 2017, students enjoy going to the library because of the comfortable seating, modern design, and suitable environment for studying or hanging out with friends. It is easy to classify the library as a major success and an example of why many of the buildings in Quartz Hill should be renovated. However, a repercussion beyond the library’s success story that is often unmentioned is the building’s identity crisis. Does the Quartz Hill High School library really deserve to be called a “library?”

By definition, a library is “a building or room containing collections of books, periodicals, and sometimes films and recorded music for people to read, borrow, and refer to.” The Quartz Hill High School library abides by this definition and serves as an outlet for a variety of books and magazines. As a result, it is expected that many students would utilize the library as a place to rent out books. However, when observing the library during lunch on a typical day, the vast majority of students in the library are either there to study, talk to friends, utilize the cubicles, or even relax and watch television. Only a handful of students still check out books on their own time, and the section of the library set aside for bookshelves is significantly smaller than the spaces set aside for desks, chairs, and sofas.

Danny Pederson, a junior, believes strongly that the school library is not serving its original purpose. “The library is used more of a place of study than a place to rent our books. I think the school should expand the bookshelves and do a better job promoting the library as an actual library.” He also makes the claim, “The only books that are being used are class set books,” suggesting that teachers observably check out their class sets of books more often than students who seek books for pleasure. 

The Quartz Hill High School library is notably not a traditional library dominated by bookshelves. Regardless, it must be worth noting that libraries are serving a different role in the age of digital technology. Instead of being repositories of printed books, libraries across the developed world are shifting to become public and modern spaces containing e-books and e-readers. The Quartz Hill library has already taken efforts to become more relevant, but more work must ultimately be done to revitalize the space and make it more conducive for readers.