Success StoriesC/SE ABLE Resource Center
A room filled with rarely-used materials is transformed into a thriving literacy resource center
“We went from 3 checkouts a year to over 300 checkouts our first year being online with Surpass Web Safari,” reports Robbie James of the Central/Southeast ABLE (Adult Basic & Literacy Education) Resource Center at Ohio University in Athens, Ohio. “Now we are doing around 50 checkouts a month!”
The small Resource Center does professional development for literacy teachers, who work long hours with those struggling to read or speak English for the first time.
“These teachers are so dedicated,” Robbie relates. “It’s exciting to be able to serve them by providing a way to help them do a heroic job. Surpass helps me do that.”
The problem is geography. “We have this broad range of people from way out in the country to downtown urban areas and we need to connect them,” Robbie explains.
The solution is Surpass Web Safari. Teachers access the Center’s Web site, then log in to Web Safari to select and reserve materials they need. Robbie then mails their selections, which patrons return with provided return postage.
“Surpass has really helped me to organize the library and make our collection usable,” said Robbie, who developed a cataloging system specific to her special library. “Surpass is really flexible.”
Thanks to its unique patron-written reviews feature, Surpass Web Safari also helps to connect teachers throughout Southern Ohio with one another.
“It’s helpful for the teachers to share their experiences and knowledge, yet they are so far from each other,” Robbie relates. “They use Surpass book reviews to recommend things to each other. More and more people are talking about what works and doesn’t work.”
In addition, the reviews give Robbie tips for collection development. “If we go out and spend the money to buy a manipulative, we need to know if it does or doesn’t work and in what settings,” Robbie explains. “Surpass book reviews provide a way for the teachers to voice their opinions.”
Robbie spent a lot of time researching before purchasing an automation system. “Surpass came out on top as the best program for the best price for our special needs. I love Surpass!”