Schools selected for the project have secured funding through the federal QZAB process or other private sources and are chosen in cooperation with Baltimore City Public Schools. The Weinberg Foundation visits each proposed school and makes its final selections based on the following criteria:
- Full time certified librarian
- Financial need
- School stability and growth plan
- Commitment to library expansion and its integration into the curriculum
The Weinberg Foundation will support up to 30% of the actual costs of each library. Through a separate contract, the Foundation will also provide an operating grant for up to four years to increase staff support in the library, provide the Maryland Food Bank’s backpack program, and provide additional professional development opportunities for each librarian. Each school community will also commit volunteer hours of parents and community members to the project to ensure the library is utilized and valued by all.
In addition to these resources, the Baltimore Elementary and Middle School Library Project will maximize partnerships to bring added value to each of the renovated spaces. A range of partners will breathe new life into the library: corporate and individual underwriters, children’s book publishers, product and technology manufacturers, media outlets, bookstores, public libraries, design companies, educators, and of course, the administrators, teachers, parents and guardians, and students in the schools. Please see our Project Partners for more details.