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The student news site of de Toledo High School

The Prowler

The student news site of de Toledo High School

The Prowler

The Den: de Toledo’s new library excites students, promotes quiet study time

Sarah Golden
Sophomores Ethan N., Yotam G., and Shira L. read books quietly in The Den. de Toledo’s new library is a space where students can go to study quietly, check out books and relax.

For 22 years, de Toledo High School students have studied in hallways, at lunch tables and while lying on the grass. Now, these students have the opportunity to engage in studying in a brand new library, “The Den.” 

The library project was proposed to Head of School Mark Shpall by English department chair and teacher Sarah Golden in 2022. After Shpall approved the project, Golden and other teachers spent their summers buying books and furnishing the space. 

Golden said the team focused on buying books students want to read and choosing many genres such as fiction, non-fiction, classics, sports and humor. 

“We hope that students will use the library to borrow books, browse books and find books they’re interested in,” Golden said. “We hope that they will go in and ask the librarian for recommendations on books.” 

The Den will be open Monday through Thursday between the second and fifth periods of each day. 

There will always be a teacher in The Den to enforce a quiet, respectful environment. If students want to check out a book, they should consult the teacher in attendance. 

How do you check out a book? Here are the steps: First, find the color-coded genre of the book you want to read. Pick out a book or two and approach the teacher who is in the library. They will then write your name in a spreadsheet to track what books have left the library. 

If a student holds onto a book for an extended period, they will be asked to return it as soon as possible. 

“If a student has a book for too long, we will ask them, ‘Are you ever going to bring that book back?’” Golden said. “When we get to the end of the school year, we will deal with the situation more intensely, and if a student has lost the book, we will tell them to be more careful next time.” 

In addition to teachers in the English Department, Speech Performance, Speech and Debate, Mock Trial Coach and Academic Teams Leader Robert Lebeda has been appointed to look over the library during its open hours.

In his role as librarian, Lebida assists students with checking out books, oversees scheduling and ensures the library is always quiet. 

“I think there is going to be some excitement around the library that might lead to some noise and talking,” Lebida said. “As time goes on, we will set stricter intentions with students and ask them to be quiet or go outside more often.”

Lebida said that he hopes students will use the library during finals to relax and have time to focus. 

“I have noticed that students have wanted a quiet space for a long time,” Lebida said. “Yes, there’s a lot of space on our campus to have fun and joke around, but not many quiet spaces, so we needed the library.” 

Lebida said he is happy with the outcome of the library so far. He said he has noticed students constructively utilizing the space. He said he wants students to spread the word about The Den so more students would visit. 

Lior Studnick (‘25) said she cannot wait to use the library during her free periods. As a second-semester junior, Studnick said she is oftentimes feeling overwhelmed and wishes she had a quiet space to study. 

“I am excited to have a nice, quiet space to just study and be myself without distractions,” said Studnick. “I want to use the library to help me not procrastinate my work. I am going to lock in and really focus on school.”  

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About the Contributor
Ella Schwartz
Ella Schwartz, Managing Editor
Ella Schwartz is a junior at de Toledo and it is her first year writing for The Prowler. She likes hanging out with her friends, writing and traveling.

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