A delightful deluge of books has arrived at hundreds of primary schools this month as Penguin and The National Literacy Trust have teamed up with seven independent publishers on library transformation programme World of Stories.

One-hundred-and-fifty-two schools, based in parts of Black Country, East London, Blackpool, Essex, Swindon and the Northeast, are taking part this year. Each school will receive 400 books to help breathe new life into their school library and bespoke training to help teachers nurture a culture of reading for pleasure in their school, as well as to build vital links with local public libraries.

For the first time, 100 titles from independent publishers will be added to those from Puffin. The publishers taking part are B Small, Barrington Stoke, Scallywag Press, Emma Press, Knights Of, Lantana, and Sweet Cherry. Along with the books, colourful resources such as posters, bookmarks, bunting and a library of audiobooks will be sent to schools to help them create a fun and inviting reading space.

World of Stories was launched by Penguin Random House UK and the National Literacy Trust in 2018, aiming to address the lack of investment in primary school libraries in the UK. One in 8 primary schools in England do not have a library, and 40% of schools have no budget to buy books for their library. To raise awareness of the chronic lack of investment in primary schools and to help to solve the issue, Penguin Random House UK and the National Literacy Trust also launched a Primary School Library Alliance in 2021, with the aim of transforming 1,000 primary school libraries by 2025.

So far, 225 schools nationwide have been part of the award-winning World of Stories programme. With an investment from Arts Council England, the programme is being expanded to impact 500 schools over the next three years in communities designated as Priority Places by the Arts Council, where it wants to develop new opportunities for investment.

Find out more at www.worldofstories.co.uk

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