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Open 7.30am – 6pm, the library is at the heart of Latymer Upper School, physically and academically. It offers students a place for quiet independent study and reading for pleasure. It is also a calm refuge in a busy school where all are welcome.

The collection

The collection includes over 13,000 books and print resources, as well as 10,000 weblinks via our catalogue. Our digital collection includes 40 academic online subscriptions (digital magazines, eBooks, newspaper and journal archives, subject-specific databases and image banks). Almost all of these are also accessible remotely. Links to other libraries are also developed, from local public libraries (searchable from our catalogue) to special collections such as the National Art Library. Our membership to the London Library provides access to over a million books to support coursework, personal investigations, EP and individual interests. 

Independent study and information literacy

The library is the place to come for focused independent study and indeed many Sixth Form students opt to spend their private study periods here. There are just over 100 study spaces. Students are welcome to use their school device or their own laptop or tablet. We have six networked PCs for quick access, and Sixth Form students may also borrow a laptop. Printing, copying & scanning facilities are all available.

The librarians offer information literacy and digital literacy skills training. The aim is to help all students become confident and independent learners by developing their ability to find, evaluate and use information effectively.

Students in Year 7 have an induction and full training in how to: 

  • use the catalogue to search for resources
  • access reading lists and create/share favourite lists for themselves, 
  • maintain their own library account online (including renewing and reserving, rating and reviewing books)

The librarians also work with teachers across departments to develop students’ information literacy in the context of specific projects, from Year 7 PSHCE to Year 9 Global Goals to Sixth Form Extended Projects. 

Reading for pleasure

There are comfortable reading areas and a wealth of books to stimulate students’ leisure reading. The librarians strive to foster a love of reading through an annual programme of book talks and events, such as “Blind Date with a Book”, and at least three author visits. Student library helpers assist with planning activities and displays to promote a reading culture. There are plenty of opportunities for students to join in the fun:



  • the Latymer book challenge for Years 7–8 and 9–10, based on the Trinity Schools Book Awards (TSBA), where students are challenged to read 5–6 shortlisted books on a theme, with student competitions and prizes for the most well-read form
  • taking part in literary quizzes, such as Kids’ Lit Quiz and CWIZZ
  • shadowing book awards (TSBA, Information Book of the Year, Excelsior Award for graphic novels, Carnegie Medal, etc.)

A professional library service

The library is staffed by two full-time qualified librarians, a graduate trainee and a part-time library assistant. There is always someone on hand to support students. We believe that “every child deserves a great school library” and are proud that our Information Literacy case study was one of four published in the Great School Libraries report (October 2019).

Our annual graduate trainee position provides a graduate who wishes to become a librarian with the work experience required for the MA course. Ms Yeend, our morning library assistant, also works at an academic library at UCL in London. Both librarians (Ms McCargar and Miss Leeper) are members of CILIP, the School Library Association and the National Literacy Trust. They are committed to developing their skills through ongoing CPD, and regularly attend or present at relevant conferences, such as JCS Digital Literacy in Schools. Ms McCargar is on the committee of the Trinity Schools Book Award (TSBA). The library’s Twitter account is @Latymer_library.

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Sixth Form
Sixth Form
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