Our Library catalogue system is available inside school here. Use the catalogue to find out which books we hold and also find links to websites that will help with your school work.

There is also a Library blog, where you can add your views on what you are reading and find out about the latest Library news and forthcoming events!

Librarians : Mrs C Wolf & Mrs J Turner

Opening Times

Monday – Thursday: 08:15 – 16:15
Friday: 08:15 – 15:45

About our library

The Library is situated in a central position within the school; it is an impressive building with an elaborate high domed ceiling and a first floor gallery. The new refurbishment has created an attractive bright and welcoming School Library, much admired by both staff and students.

The ground floor level of the Library is light and appealing with a range of comfortable seating, and has an open plan with a wide selection of fiction available on the shelves. Non-fiction books are arranged in Dewey Decimal order at the top of the stairs; reference books such as dictionaries and encyclopedias are to be found on these shelves too. We have around 10,000 books available for staff and students to borrow and we regularly update our stock selection.

The Library computer room doubles as the Careers Library; it is situated at the back of the Library and is where Mrs Yeomans, Careers Support Manager, has her office. There are 14 networked computers available to students in the Library computer room/Careers Library. There are a further 12 networked P.C.s in the main room of the library. The photocopier/printer is located in the Careers Library. The Library computers may be booked for class use or for small group use. Students in Years 7 to 11 must bring a note from their class teacher if they come to work in the Library without a member of staff during lesson time.

There is seating for around 36 students in the upstairs Study area of the Library with a mixture of individual desks, several smaller tables and one large table. This makes the space adaptable for a range of study preferences from small groups to a whole class. We also have around 16 comfortable low chairs along the walkways upstairs, an ideal arrangement for friends to sit together reading at break and lunch time or for private reading.

The School Library is covered by CCTV.

Library Computers, Printing and Photocopying Facilities

There are 26 networked computers in the Library for student use. There are also an additional 15 laptops and a small number of tablet computers available for student use. We also have a printer available for student use. Black and white printing is free but colour printing costs 20p per A4 page; cash payment can be made at the Library Desk. The printer is also able to scan and photocopy and print A3 documents. Photocopies cost 5p per A4 page.

Library Stationery Shop

The Library Shop is open for business before school, at break and lunchtime and after school. We will not sell stationery supplies during lesson time. Various items of stationery such as pens, pencils and maths equipment can be bought at very reasonable prices from the Library. The shop is for Hele’s students and staff use only.

Homework Club

From 15:00 to 16:15 (15:45 on Fridays) there are members of staff available to help students with their classwork and any homework tasks. We ask that students sign in to Homework Club but they are free to leave when they choose. Staff can help provide support and equipment.

The Library’s Responsibilities

We aim to:

  • enable, encourage and support you in your learning
  • encourage you to be an active and independent learner
  • develop your research and information handling skills
  • encourage you to read for pleasure
  • provide a range of resources to support you in your learning, hobbies and leisure interests

Borrowing Library Resources

  • Students in Years 7 to 11 may borrow two library books or other resources at a time. Members of Book Club may borrow 3 items.
  • The loan period is two weeks.
  • Students in Years 12 and 13 may borrow 6 items at any one time.
  • When a book or item is overdue, Library staff will send a note to students to request the return or renewal of the loan. We ask that students take responsibility for the items they borrow and respond to any overdue notices promptly. Our policy is not to charge fines for overdue items but if something is lost we ask students to pay for the lost item. We provide a receipt and will refund the payment if the “lost” item turns up at a later date. It is not uncommon for students to claim they have returned items which are later found at home.
  • Occasionally items are returned to the Library but aren’t properly returned on the Library computer system. In such cases, Library staff check the shelves and if the item is still missing, we send a bill for the replacement cost of the item and explain that if the item is found later and returned to the Library, then the money will be refunded.
  • When a student has an overdue item on their record Library staff will not issue another item until the overdue item is returned.

Students’ Responsibilities

Rules are few but you are responsible for ensuring these guidelines are met:

  • For security and safety, please leave your bag outside on the shelves provided.
  • When visiting the Library remember to bring with you equipment that you will need i.e. pen, pencil, exercise book etc.
  • The Library is your quiet working environment and it is also a quiet environment for others – please respect their needs too.
  • Please put books away and leave the Library tidy after use. Leave it as you would like to find it.
  • You are reminded that the Library is a food and drink free zone (although water bottles are allowed).
  • Mobile phones and music players are not permitted in the Library.

Library Online Information Resources

We have signed up to high quality, subscription-only online resources to give students a great selection of online learning resources. There are a number of online resources that are available to Hele’s staff and students through the school network. The Guide to Online Resources gives details about these information sources.

Please login to the school website to see the Library Resources page which contains the links with login and password information.

It also gives advice on using resources available through Plymouth Library Service’s Reference Online. Users will need to have a valid Plymouth public library card to make use of this site. The Library catalogue also includes links to good quality relevant websites.

Student participation in the library

Students from Year 9 are encouraged to act as library monitors at break and lunchtimes. The duties involve assisting younger Year 7 students with research and homework and helping with the running of the Library Stationery Shop. Students are asked to apply for the positions, and they are interviewed by the Librarian and Library Assistant before being appointed to the posts. Certificates of completion are awarded at the end of the year. Successful library monitors are given the opportunity of continuing into Year 10. A full training programme is available.

Students participating in The Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme in school are offered Librarianship and Reading as an option for their skills section of the Award.

All students are encouraged to make recommendations for books/resources to be held in the Library. Email us to let us know what you would like to see in your School Library, or talk to the Library staff when you are here.

How To Write A Book Review

Helpful tips can be found here.

Recommended Reading

Prize Winning Books: listed below are some books which have won prestigious prizes such as the Carnegie Medal and Children’s Book Award.

Royal Society Young People’s Book Prize 2013

Hele’s School is taking part in judging the winning book as part of the Royal Society Young People’s Book Prize 2013.

Student panel members must be aged 10-14 and we need around 10 people. Panellists need to read 6 shortlisted books and decide which one is the best!

Contact Mrs Wolf in the library for more details. Email: Further information can be found on the Royal Society website.

Mlle Bourgault

Carnegie Award

The Carnegie Medal is awarded by children’s librarians for an outstanding book for children and young people.

Here at Hele’s School we shadow the Award, reading the shortlisted titles and deciding which we like best. Our choice doesn’t always match the eventual winner. We also join other local schools in a fun Carnegie Award day celebration, where each school gives a presentation about one of the books, before we find out who has won.

The book that wins the Carnegie Medal should be a book of outstanding literary quality. The whole work should provide enjoyment, both when reading and also afterwards, when recalling the story. Look at the list of recent winners – they are all great reads!

E-Books from the School Library

The School Library is able to offer access to the Library Service for Schools e-book platform, managed by Wheelers. The link above will take you to the site. Please contact Mrs Wolf in the School Library to be given a unique login. Each e-book is on loan for two weeks and will automatically expire after this time, though there is also an option to extend the loan period by renewing it. The choice of books isn’t huge but it will grow as more students make use of this exciting alternative to paper books.

The FAQ page for this platform is at and it should provide all the guidance needed.




E-Books from the public Library

The public Library is a great place to find more e-books for the keen reader. Their e-book platform is run by Overdrive and the login used is the number on your Library card with a PIN set up by the user. It is the same login as you use to renew loans over the internet so it may already be “live”. If not please ring your local library to set this up – Plympton Library tel 01752 305630 – or email

The help pages for e-book use are at
and offer extensive guidance for each device type used for e-reading.

The public Library Service also offer a free digital magazine service called Zinio – a new way to catch up with the latest magazines for free!

If you have any further questions please email Mrs Wolf on

Accelerated Reader

The Library stocks a wide range of books, both fiction and non-fiction, to support the Accelerated Reader scheme. They are largely shelved in number order at the front of the School Library, under the stairs but some books with quizzes are also available from the fiction genre sections in the central section of the Library as well. The Library catalogue shows if a book has a quiz and where it is to be found on the shelves.

There are books with quizzes that are not part of Library stock and students often ask if they can read a “home” book rather than a library book during DEAR time. The website is one place to find out if the book you want to read has a quiz. Alternatively, students can search when they are logged in to Accelerated Reader at . There are frustrating times however, when one must wait for a quiz to be prepared for a new book . The Quiz masters at Accelerated Reader are not always able to keep up with the number of great books published, but it is possible to suggest books for quizzes, an option that allows you to set up an email alert and then you are advised when the book gets a quiz.

We encourage parents and guardians to keep up with student progress with quizzes, the Home Connect website is the place to do this at The student login details are the same as they use in school.

The FAQs page with commonly asked questions about DEAR time and the Accelerated Reader scheme is here.

The Accelerated Reader: A Guide for Parents document is here.

The list of 100 titles of Classic Fiction and recommended books is available here. It is in no particular order but all titles have quizzes available and many of the authors mentioned have written additional books and they too have quizzes.

Contact Library staff to recommend books for Library stock or if there are any questions about Accelerated Reader.

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