Pictures: Well-read Grangemouth pupils back library funding bid alongisde Deputy Minister

A group of book daft youngsters shared their love of literature with Scotland’s Deputy First Minister this week.

Now the pupils, who gathered at a special event in Grangemouth High School on Monday, hope MSP John Swinney and the Scottish Government will share some of the £450,000 being made available to improve school library services.

Mr Swinney launched the second round of bidding for the Scottish Library Improvement Fund (SLIF), which offers a total of £1 million over three years to support projects that meet key priority areas – including the curriculum, health and wellbeing, information and digital literacy, family learning, and standards and leadership.

Education authorities have until May 14 to apply for a share of this year’s allocation.

Grangemouth High School secured £20,000 in the first round of SLIF bids for its project to raise the attainment of pupils with English as an additional language. The initiative, which also involves three primary schools in the area, aims to enhance literacy skills by encouraging a love of reading and engaging with families through a shared writing project that will eventually produce a book exploring the subject of identity.

Mr Swinney, who handed out Literacy Leader badges to pupils, said: “Our School Library Improvement Fund recognises the vital role school libraries play in supporting literacy and improving attainment. It aims to encourage innovation within the school library sector and, last year, funded 15 fantastic projects across Scotland including the one we heard about today at Grangemouth.

“I would encourage all schools to consider applying for the fund and use the investment to make their school library an exciting and inspiring place to learn, at the heart of the school community.”

Visit the Scottish Libraries website for more information on SLIF.