Wednesday 15 July, 2020

Out of print textbooks causing headaches

Parents getting help in Cloister Bookstore as they try to get everything on booklists.

Parents getting help in Cloister Bookstore as they try to get everything on booklists.

One bookstore wants schools and teachers to do better by their students when it comes to choosing their textbooks for the new school year.

Store Manager of Cloister Bookstore in Dome Mall, Warrens, Kimberley Moe said that unfortunately, they are still experiencing problems with outdated books being requested by parents for their children.

“It [including out of print books on the lists] really hampers the [back-to-school shopping] process because the parents are then irate with us, as in why weren’t the schools notified that the book is out of print.

“But when the schools write the booklists they are supposed to sit with the teachers and go through the lists and stuff. We have a lot of teachers that come in here on a regular basis for stationery and stuff and sometimes they ask for the books for the next upcoming year. So they go through the books.

“So, to be honest, we are surprised when the booklists come in and you have books that are not in print anymore or haven’t been in print for two, three years and you’re seeing them on the booklists.”

Moe was walking around the store from shelf to shelf helping parents gather the books and stationery supplies for their little ones when Loop visited the store.

In terms of what is causing the biggest headache, she smiled and quickly responded:

“The head books that we are having issues with are the Early Spelling and Key Spelling. Those books were pulled by the printer and they combined all two to make Spelling 1 but you will still find that majority of the time on the booklists you are still seeing the separate books.

“And when you’re telling parents that the books are not the lists then comes the 20 questions. But what we try to do is to not replace the books immediately without the school giving them permission.”

Though noting that the delay in purchasing is a significant inconvenience for some parents who have no means of communication with the school and teachers until the start of the school year in September, she said that offering alternatives is not always an option either.

“This is because sometimes the school might not use the exact book. Say for instance the book that would replace that one is Spelling 1 up to 6, but it all depends on the age. So sometimes you find different schools for different age groups use the different numbers.”

She said that unguided by the schools, she and her staff can’t always make the right suggestion for their infants. “It all depends on where they’re at with the syllabus and what the kids are doing at that point of time.” She said one school may take the new Spelling 1, and for the age range, another school may take Spelling 2, so it’s not a matter of just grabbing a book and going either.

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