The much-loved Millais Learning Resource Centre (LRC) was re-designed in Spring 2021 to create an inspiring, contemporary and comfortable library and IT workspace for students to use throughout the day and after school.
The LRC is supervised and open to students from 8.30am until 5.00pm from Monday to Thursday, and from 8.30am until 3.00pm on Fridays.
Colourful, modern and flooded with light, it is situated in the heart of the campus next to the Main School Hall giving all students easy access to the books, IT facilities and staff support.
The space is relaxed and welcoming with soft chairs, curved tables and bespoke furniture designed to promote reading and independence and help students focus and think creatively during lessons, individual and group work.
From the moment they enter the LRC, students are encouraged to read for pleasure and value books to support their learning and interests. New accessible bookshelves and displays encourage both passionate and reluctant readers to browse and borrow from our curated fiction and non-fiction sections. These include the latest award-winning children’s, Teen and YA novels and classic titles to suit varied interests, ages and reading abilities. LRC librarians are always on hand to give advice to students looking for a good book. Our year 10 student Reading Ambassadors meet their Reading Buddies from KS3 in the LRC on a weekly basis. In small groups, the students read aloud together to boost confidence and reading skills.
The LRC is very popular with all year groups, and many students choose to visit at break times and after school to attend clubs or work with peers and complete homework in a respectful and collaborative environment.
There is no need to book to use the LRC after school from 3.00-5.00pm. Students sign in when they arrive and benefit from staff supervision and use of the IT resources. These include 32 laptops, 8 new Mac/PC computers, iPads and printer/photocopier and coding microbits.
The LRC library collection has over 8,000 fiction and non-fiction books for students to borrow and take home for free. From 2022, students can enjoy browsing the collection online, reserve books and post book reviews.
The latest best-selling and CILIP Carnegie Award nominated children’s novels by new and favourite authors are available from the LRC. The collection is regularly updated with books for all tastes and abilities in Key Stage 3 and Key Stage 4. Our librarians also source books recommended by students and teaching staff from the specialist curriculum areas.
The fiction section features a growing selection of classic literature, manga and graphic novels plus thousands of books by much-loved classic and contemporary authors of children’s, Teen and Young Adult fiction. Our new and improved accessible collection includes super-readable and very popular age-appropriate dyslexia friendly books by award-winning writers.
Students also enjoy the opportunity to read thousands of ebooks and audiobooks through the Sora app and our specialist eLibrary subscription. With their school login, students can go online to borrow from over 2,000 quality ebooks using a mobile phone, computer or personal device wherever they are. The ebook collection is curated for secondary level, including GCSE set texts, study guides, leisure interest and books for teens.
Thousands more ebooks are available to our students reading on Sora via the West Sussex County Council Library Service. They just need to add this to the libraries list on their Millais Sora account.
Teachers bring classes to the LRC for regular computer-based lessons, meetings, talks and events. They use the interactive whiteboard and display screen to show videos and presentations and engage students in interactive online sessions.
Our friendly team of Student Librarians volunteer in the LRC at break times and after school. They look after the book collection and help their peers select books and use the facilities. Student librarians also support the running of the very popular pop-up library taken outside the LRC at break times.
The staff and student librarians often partner with teachers from the English CA on special themed events that promote excitement and enthusiasm for reading and literature. These include regular school-wide Drop Everything and Read days, author visits, virtual talks, World Book Day events and competitions and the annual Readathon. The LRC also celebrates anniversaries including Black History Month, International Women’s Day, National Poetry Day and Roald Dahl Day.
In recent years, students have enjoyed memorable visits from award-winning authors including Peter James, Holly Smale, Lauren James, Sue Cheung, Ross McKenzie and Lucy Strange. At these LRC events, students attend a special talk with their year group and have opportunities to meet the author in person and ask them questions during a Q&A and book signing session.
The LRC has arranged student visits to attend Amazing Book Awards events with popular authors nominated for prizes by West Sussex secondary school students.