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Isabel Schon International Center for Spanish Books for Youth

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Isabel Schon International Center for Spanish Books for Youth

San Diego Public Library

Education - Birth Thru Teens | 2010

Innovation Summary

Problem Statement

Dr. Isabel Schon is a respected worldwide authority on literature for Spanish-speaking and Latino children. She is the author of 25 books and more than 400 research and literary articles. Her reviews are widely read and well respected in the publishing community and she has received numerous awards. Dr. Schon has consulted worldwide on bilingual/bicultural educational materials for schools and libraries and has worked with ministries of education in Mexico, Colombia, Guatemala, Argentina, Venezuela, Chile, Spain, Italy, Ecuador, and the United States. When she approached the San Diego Public Library about a possible collaboration, the Library welcomed the opportunity to establish an International Center for Spanish Books for Youth in this city with a rapidly growing Hispanic population.


The Isabel Schon International Center for Spanish Books for Youth was created in 2009. This unique circulating collection contains the highest quality books for Spanish-speaking children and adolescents and those who wish to learn Spanish. Dr. Schon personally selects materials for this collection based on quality of writing and illustration, presentation of material, and audience appeal. Only recommended titles are added to the Center’s collection and become part of the searchable database accessible through the San Diego Public Library’s Web site.

The Schon Center provides access to both scholarly and recreational books. The Center’s efforts are integrated into existing San Diego Public Library literacy programs such as the Summer Reading Program, the Children’s Book Festival, and READ/San Diego (the Library’s literacy program.)


In 2009, 1,551 catalog records were created and 2,720 gift books were added to the collection.