Library expands ONE Access™ program with CMSThis year, teachers—as well as students—can use CMS school ID numbers as library accounts. Plus, a pilot program with Sprint brings mobile hotspots to students without home internet.
In an expansion of a groundbreaking initiative launched last school year, the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library is adding new benefits for Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools students and educators to its highly successful ONE Access™ program. This year, CMS teachers and staff will be given Library E-accounts, and the Library is piloting a student mobile hotspot lending program with Sprint to address the challenges faced by students in homes without internet connectivity.
The ONE Access initiative was launched in fall 2015, when more than 146,000 students in CMS’ 168 schools were given public library accounts that they could easily use with just a CMS student ID number. The initiative was named ONE Access because one number—a CMS student ID—was the only number a student needed to remember to access the wealth of resources of the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library. Details were announced in a fall 2015 media briefing, and the program was immediately embraced. By December 2015, more than 100,000 students had used their ONE Access accounts.
“A great deal of planning went on last year to get ONE Access off the ground,” notes Library CEO Lee Keesler. “The Library and CMS articulated shared goals, coordinated technical systems, and partnered to encourage students to use their ONE Access accounts—even in the summer. We’re pleased to be able to expand the program to include CMS staff.”
“When we were asked to create ONE Access E-accounts for the 18,000 CMS teachers and staff, we had no hesitation in agreeing to make it happen,” says Director of Libraries David Singleton, “It’s a natural expansion of the program to give access to the educators and staff who serve our students.”
Beginning September 1, teachers and staff in the CMS system will be able to use a unique ID as their ONE Access E-account, giving them instant access to all of Charlotte Mecklenburg Library's online resources, including e-books, research databases and online instructional course sites like Lynda.com. Teachers can find details on the Library’s ONE Access web page, cmlibrary.org/oneaccess. The ONE Access account complements the Library’s standard Teacher Loan Card program, available to all educators who teach in Mecklenburg County, which allows teachers to borrow up to 30 items for six weeks for classroom use (cmlibrary.org/teacher-loan-card).
"We are excited and thankful for the expanded literacy support every CMS student will receive as the ONE Access program continues to grow," said CMS Superintendent Ann Clark. "Together we can help all of our students graduate with the literacy skills they will need for college and career success."
The Library is also piloting new ONE Access initiatives with the aim of testing solutions for the educational challenges that exist beyond the walls of schools and libraries. One of these challenges is lack of internet access in many Charlotte-area households, locking students out of learning after the school day ends. This school year, Sprint and Charlotte Mecklenburg Library have made a commitment of offering 150 free, wireless hotspots to CMS students to stay connected at home. The Library hopes the pilot program can be expanded to ensure no child or family is left behind.
“When public schools and public libraries partner with technology providers like Sprint, we expand exponentially the opportunities for students to learn,” says Keesler. “They deserve no less.”