When Angela Sugarek took the helm at Hogg Middle School in the summer of 2015, one of her priorities was to continue the work of her predecessor. Her goal: to have a fully functioning library, complete with its own certified librarian.
That dream became a reality recently, when the campus celebrated the complete renovation of its library with a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Jan. 21. The library at Hogg is now state-of-the-art, with warm wood accents, rolling shelves filled with tempting and informative titles, and a presentation area that invites students and teachers to linger while they learn.
“We are excited to be giving our students a newly renovated library managed by our amazing full-time certified librarian,” said Sugarek. “We believe in the power of reading to change students’ lives and we know that strong library programs support literacy.”
Mary Chance, Hogg’s librarian, populates her shelves with intriguing titles to grab students’ attention. She is also working hard to grow the modest stacks at the Title I school by reaching out to the greater Houston community.
“For students, the library is their portal to the wider world beyond,” said Chance. “I see myself as a bridge between the books in the stacks and the digital future. And I relish that part of my job, because we have so many resources to share.”
Chance has also created a library-within-a-library called the Literacy Library. This collection allows English-language-arts teachers to check out sets of books suited to differentiated, small reading groups where students are divided up according to their respective reading levels.
“Research shows that these targeted groups help increase vocabulary and encourage independent growth in readers,” added Chance. Small reading groups are also a key part of the district’s Literacy By 3 initiative.
Special guest Dr. Martha Wong, a distinguished Hogg alumna, helped cut the ceremonial ribbon to formally open the newly refurbished library. “What a great gift for our students,” said Dr. Wong. “Two dedicated and energetic women lead caring parents, faculty, and students to provide a beautiful library for my junior high.”
See what Hogg students, faculty, and staff envision in their dream library in this related video.