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New library created at Propel HOMESTEAD by Target and Pittsburgh Cares

Students and faculty at Propel HOMESTEAD are enjoying the K-8 school’s very first library.

Thanks to the efforts of 100 Target and Pittsburgh Cares volunteers, a library was created on the school’s E. Tenth Ave. campus on Sept. 29.

“We never had space for a library. It’s a sanctuary for students, a place with a different tone. Students can experience the feel of going to a library and be responsible for checking out books,” says Megan Newsome, Propel HOMESTEAD’s literacy coach. The self-described “boomerang” returned to Pittsburgh after teaching in Maryland. “It’s a learning lab. Our kids are so used to doing online research. We want them to understand how to use print research. We’re prepping them for high school and beyond.”

With materials and furniture donated by Target and Pittsburgh Cares, the library features a blue and gold color scheme, hanging lanterns and geometric motifs. Author quotes adorn walls and a decorative frieze. Target also donated beanbags, rugs, lap desks, and its signature white author’s chair.

Designed with input from families, children, teachers, and administrators, the space also features an IdeaPaint whiteboard, refurbished computers and professional resources for teachers. The flexible space will house the school’s literature circles, book talks and Intervention Hour programs.

Based on its percentage of low-income children and need for library improvement, Propel HOMESTEAD was selected by Target as one of 23 schools across the country to receive a new library. Pittsburgh-based nonprofit Propel Schools operates high performance schools of choice in educationally underserved communities, including Turtle Creek, McKeesport and Montour.

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Writer: Jennifer Baron
Sources: Megan Newsome, literacy coach, Propel HOMESTEAD; Anne D'Appolonia, director of development, Propel Schools

Image courtesy Propel Schools and Target
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