Marsha McLean | Back to School with the Library

Australian artist Emma Anna at the unveiling ceremony of her sculpture entitled "Imag_ne" on permanent display at the Valencia Library in Valencia on Wednesday. Dan Watson/The Signal

The start of something new is always an exciting time comprised of feelings that range from nervous to joyful, anxious, uncertain and others. For you, these feelings may accompany the start of a job, moving to an unfamiliar city or trying out a new hobby. For many students, these feelings arise at the beginning of a new school year. Back-to-school time can be both wonderful and scary, and when coupled with the uncertainty of the ongoing pandemic, it is easy to see how students can become overwhelmed.

The Santa Clarita Public Library eases the worries of students, of all ages, through an extensive offering of resources and a vast collection of books and materials.

Whether you have a child heading to preschool, elementary school or high school, free online library resources are available with a library card. For preschoolers, reading list recommendations of picture books are available to familiarize your little ones with letters, numbers, animals, nursery rhymes and more. Tumblebooks is another excellent resource for preschoolers and elementary students that encourages reading in a fun, animated online book format.

Other popular resources for students of all ages include live homework support via HelpNow, the broad research database Explora for Students and Learning Express for practice exams. I am proud that Santa Clarita Public Library continues to support students of all ages in a wide variety of subjects through eLibrary resources.

Parents and teachers can better prepare for and navigate through the new school by taking advantage of the Library’s Parent-Teacher Resource Center as well. The center aids teachers and parents with a collection of materials aimed at enriching the educational experiences of children from birth through 12th grade. Materials provided are in accordance with Common Core State Standards to help students excel. The Parent-Teacher Resource Center, along with the eLibrary and the library’s existing catalog, also greatly support homeschoolers in their learning journeys.

Another crucial aspect of the library’s back-to-school offerings includes mental health resources. The past year was an emotional rollercoaster for many. Additionally, countless individuals are dealing with other tough circumstances that have taken a toll mentally. The library team has curated a list of resources, support websites and crafts to help community members of all ages. Explore the page for yourself at and share it with a loved one who would benefit. Residents may also inquire about available mental health and wellness kits of books and activities available at each library branch.

Heading back to school should be an exciting time for students of all grade levels. With so many pressures and worries in the world, the promise of a new school year hopefully will be met with feelings of adventure and optimism. I, along with the entire Santa Clarita City Council, send our best wishes and good luck to those starting school or returning to school this fall.

Please remember that the Santa Clarita Public Library is available to residents in both an in-person and online format to ensure success in this new school year.

From exam help to math support, foreign language instruction, expansive book collections, mental health kits, fun fall events and more, you can find everything you need at the library. Sign up for a library card, if you haven’t done so already, and learn more at

Marsha McLean is a member of Santa Clarita’s City Council and can be reached at [email protected].

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