A cash-strapped school that says its budgets are so tight it cannot stock its library with books is appealing for donations.
Henry Box School in Witney has received 70 books since registering with the book donation charity website Book Buddy.
The Church Green school is one of at least five other schools across Oxfordshire pleading for contributions due to restricting financial pressures.
Its appeal on the Book Buddy website reads: “We have around 1,200 students and very limited funding.
“There has been a limited budget this year for the library and we are in need of some new and recent books for the students who use the library in their thousands each year.”
It added: “YA fiction, EAL bilingual books, graphic novels and up to date non-fiction would be of most use. Thanks to anyone out there who can help with this.”
Deputy headteacher Rebecca Goddard said the school is benefiting since signing up to Book Buddy.
She told the Guardian: “So far we have received 70 fiction and non-fiction books to supplement the already wonderful range of books in our library.
“With school budgets coming under continuing pressure, we value this opportunity to extend our range of books to enrich our reading offer to our students.
“We would like to thank Book Buddies for supplying books to our school and would also like to thank the Henry Box School Association for donating £500 to the library.
“Literacy is a key focus at The Henry Box School and we are pleased that so many of our students make excellent use of our library.”
Other schools asking for help include Marcham Primary School, near Abingdon and Tackley Primary School, near Bicester. In Oxford, St Christophers, Larkrise and St Michael’s primary schools are also requesting donations.
Run by children’s author Maz Evans, Book Buddy said 504 schools signed up in February and March, adding: “It continues to be disgraceful that such a scheme needs to exist.”
Oxford author Phillip Pullman last year called for a halt to the ‘shocking decline’ in England’s school libraries.
The His Dark Materials star, along with 149 others, wrote to then-Education Secretary Justine Greening, asking her to set up a national service and to safeguard the positions of qualified librarians in schools.
A Department for Education spokesperson said: “School leaders are best placed to decide how to use their funds to meet the needs of their pupils – such as providing school libraries.”
Visit tinyurl.com/y7s4eegg to donate and find out more information.