Parkway School District, School District of Clayton and St. Louis County Library have formed a new partnership using ebooks and e-audiobooks to modernize access to reading materials for students. This unique collaboration strives to promote literacy and digital learning by providing unprecedented access to both the schools’ and the library’s digital reading resources in one app. The combination of convenience, ease of reading on-the-go, and the inherent popularity of technology inspires students to learn anytime, anywhere.

The county partnership provides safe access to thousands of age-appropriate titles for students’ use inside the classroom, at home and anywhere 24/7. Through Sora, the new student reading app for Parkway School District and School District of Clayton, students can borrow the school’s collection of classroom and pleasure reading, and also access St. Louis County Library’s juvenile and young adult digital collection. In addition, Sora supports teachers by offering education-specific tools like achievements, exportable notes, and reading progress that encourage individualized learning.

“Having a library card opens up a world of opportunity for students in our community,” said Eric Button, St. Louis County Library deputy director. “Libraries provide access to books, educational databases, technology and programs; resources that make for successful students and future leaders in the St. Louis region."

“The partnership between Parkway and the St. Louis County Library system to provide students access to digital resources and materials is instrumental in their education,” stated Bill Bass, innovation coordinator at Parkway School District. “Not only are we able to expand the opportunity for exploration and discovery through reading and literature, we can also design authentic learning experience and digital age tools to our classrooms expanding the possibilities for our classrooms and our community.” 

School District of Clayton’s Library Media Specialist Victoria Jones added, "Our partnership with St. Louis County Library has allowed our students access to thousands more ebooks and audiobooks than our small district could ever offer. We are thrilled that students use their digital library cards to check out books and use them on the dynamic Sora app. Sora has so many cool features that give students the opportunity to individualize their reading experiences."

The Sora app was named one of TIME’s Best Inventions 2019 and is available for Parkway School District and School District of Clayton students to download through the Apple App Store and Google Play Store, and on Chromebooks that support the Google Play Store. It is also available for use in web browsers at soraapp.com on any computer.

The entire St. Louis County community can access St. Louis County Library’s complete ebook and e-audiobook collection through the award-winning Libby app. Readers can use Libby on any major device or computer, including Apple, Android, Chromeboo and Kindle.

Both reading apps are built by OverDrive and OverDrive Education. To learn more, visit meet.soraapp.com and meet.libbyapp.com.

About St. Louis County Library

St. Louis County Library is the busiest public library in Missouri. In 2019, the library circulated over 16 million items including books, DVDs, eMedia, video games, periodicals and CDs. In the same year, over 5 million people visited SLCL branches and bookmobiles. The library consists of 20 branches, 19 of which are undergoing significant upgrades as part of the Your Library Renewed campaign. SLCL offers a wide variety of innovative programming including story time for children on the autism spectrum, Career Online High School for adults seeking to earn a high school diploma, and coding workshops for kids and teens. To learn more about SLCL programs and services, visit www.slcl.org.