Services provided for nurseries and playgroups



Harrow School Library Service helps schools, nurseries and playgroups to obtain and maintain excellent school libraries and classroom resource collections to support the requirements of the curriculum and to encourage reading for pleasure from the earliest age. The Service for Nurseries and Playgroups provides an in-depth knowledge of children's literature and curriculum support to meet the learning and development requirements of the Early Years framework, with the aim of giving every child the best possible start in life.


We aim to encourage the development of a love of books and reading through high-quality, engaging, and robust books, including picture books, poetry, nursery rhymes and songs, and information books in a variety of formats. Our goal is to encourage children to develop important language and literacy skills early on.  Young children benefit from sharing stories and exploring a range of interactive books which encourage them to be curious about the world around them.  A collection of new, attractive and age-appropriate books in the classroom or reading corner will not only support children's learning but also provide variety to keep your selection of resources fresh and inviting.


Our project loan boxes can include:

  • Picture books, board books and non-fiction books on topics of your choice
  • Books to support language development, with repetition, rhyme and rhythm
  • Interactive books to help children learn using different senses>
  • Dual-language picture books in 26 languages including Gujarati, Polish and Romanian


Description of Service


This is a service devised to support children in Nurseries or Playgroups, and includes project loans, advisory services and other items as detailed below.


The School Library Service comprises:

  • Project Loan Service
    Teachers may request one collection of books to meet the particular needs of the children in their class each term from a collection of over 50,000 titles.  Each collection will consist of approximately 30 attractive and up-to-date picture books, board books, interactive books and non-fiction, worth up to £400.  Cost of delivery and collection is included.

  • A qualified librarian who can offer guidance setting up and managing library collections. They can assist with organising the books in the library and also suggest creative ways to use them in the classroom. They may also help with events featuring authors and illustrators.

  • Support and practical assistance from the HSLS team with tasks such as classifying books, labelling, repair or updating records on library management systems.

  • Storytelling sessions.

  • Discounted Purchase Scheme and Personal Shopper Service.
    A purchase scheme is available or teachers/librarians can make use of our discounted purchase scheme using their own budgets.  This scheme enables schools to make limited budgets stretch further.  All books are supplied ready for the shelf with labels, jackets or sleeves to extend their durability.  We offer a personal shopper service and can order books on your behalf.  We have access to specialist suppliers and bibliographic databases.

  • Exhibition Collection of over 11,000 recommended and in print children’s books for teachers to inspect prior to purchase.  Advice from School Library Service staff during your visit and assistance with ordering books.

  • CPD including Library Co-ordinators’ meetings and training courses.

  • Subscription to Pen&Inc magazine containing latest information on diverse and inclusive children’s books.

  • Newsletter and discounts on publications.


Performance Standards

Helpdesk:  Available Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm, during term-time and school holidays.  An email facility is available outside these hours.

Professional staff have qualifications recognised by the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals and are in membership of relevant professional organisations.

Books ordered through the purchasing service are normally delivered within three weeks outside school holidays and we can organise urgent orders for you.

Project loans will be delivered to your school as soon as possible following receipt of the request.


School's responsibility


Schools are responsible for the care of books on loan to them and for their return when requested by the School Library Service.


Contract Period


The contract will run for one year from 1st April 2024 to 31st March 2025.


Further details and charges


For further details, information about charges and to purchase this package please visit Harrow's Support Services for Education portal.


Each teacher may request one project collection for their class each term.


School Library Service
Rachel Johnston

School Library Service Manager 
Unit 4 
1 Forward Drive
Harrow HA3 8NT

020 3714 7739

[email protected]


Harrow School Library Service logo









Harrow School Library Service - supporting school libraries and staff through project loans, discounted purchase scheme and advisory services