Funding for library approved
RANKIN INLET (Oct 13/99) - The long search for funding to have the John Ayaruaq library in Rankin Inlet open during school hours is finally over.
The library is located within Maani Uluyuk middle school and the local District Education Authority (DEA) had been lobbying hard to have it available to students during school hours.
Rankin DEA chair Brian Zawadski says the local board was pleasantly surprised when the Department of Education's contribution showed up in the mail.
"The funding came as a pleasant surprise considering all the battles the local DEA has fought for library funding in the past," says Zawadski.
"It was everything we had asked for and more. Once we found out, I signed the agreement, put the job ad out for a librarian and that's where we're at now."
Zawadski says he is very happy students will now be able to access the library during school hours.
He says the accessibility will help students in a number of different ways throughout the school year.
"Everything you can think of that students would need a library open for in the day, they now have.
"Whether it's school projects, doing research, reading for fun or learning, learning the proper way to use a library, putting together essays or even a just a quiet place to go, it will all be available to them soon."
Zawadski says the DEA will be reviewing candidates for the librarian positions, (a position and a half), and hopes a decision will be reached soon.
"As soon as we find a suitable candidate the library will be open."
The Department of Education would only respond in writing to three questions it allowed Kivalliq News to submit in written form.
The answers were supplied by Kivalliq regional representative Irene Tanuyak.
In response to the question, "How much money has become available, for what and for how long?" Tanuyak wrote:
"The Rankin Inlet District Education Authority has signed an agreement with the Department of Education for the amount of $85,004.09 to provide public library services for Rankin Inlet from April 1, 1999, to March 31, 2000."
To the question, "What are the chances funding will be continued beyond this stage?" Tanuyak responded:
"The government of Nunavut's fiscal year ends March 31 each year. Chances are very good that this funding will again be approved, provided the DEA and the department can reach an agreement. The amount will depend on how much funding is approved by the legislative assembly for the year 2000/2001."
The John Ayaruaq library being located inside the Maani Ulujuk school, yet closed during school hours has been an ongoing issue in Rankin Inlet.
The final question submitted to Tanuyak was, "What event(s) unfolded for the funding to finally be allocated."
"I have no information or history about library funding in the past, therefore I cannot make a comment," she responded.