Eight in Ten (84%) Canadian Parents Believe Companies Should Donate To and Sponsor Public School Libraries

Just One in Three (35%) Agree Their Provincial Government is Doing Enough To Support Public-School Libraries

Monday, September 13, 2010

Toronto, ON – Eight in ten (84%) Canadian parents of children aged 4 to 18, inclusive, ‘agree’ (36% strongly/48% somewhat) that ‘private companies should donate funds and sponsor public-school libraries’, according to a new Ipsos Reid poll conducted on behalf of Indigo. Conversely, fewer than two in ten (16%) ‘disagree’ (6% strongly/10% somewhat) with the notion of businesses sponsoring public-school libraries.

It’s likely that so many believe companies ought to become involved in funding public-school libraries because just one in three (35%) parents ‘agree’ (5% strongly/30% somewhat) that their ‘provincial government is doing enough to support public-school libraries’. In fact, most (65%) ‘disagree’ (25% strongly/40% somewhat) that their provincial government is doing enough to support public-school libraries, with parents living in British Columbia (72%) being most likely to disagree, followed by those in Atlantic Canada (68%), Alberta (67%), Quebec (64%), Ontario (63%) and Saskatchewan and Manitoba (62%).

Most (60%) parents say their child brings home books from their school’s library at least once a week, and while three quarters (72%) ‘agree’ (26% strongly/46% somewhat) that their child’s school fundraises in order to support is library, just one in ten (11%) say that the condition of those books is new, well-bound and that the pages are in good condition. Most (81%) say that the books are average looking and appear well-loved by the students. Some (5%) parents, however, say that the books are old, faded, in poor condition and dated titles.

The quality of the books isn’t the only area where parents see room for improvement but also with the content. Three in ten (29%) actually ‘disagree’ (4% strongly/25% somewhat) that their child ‘thinks that the variety of books in their school library is great’. On the other hand, 15% ‘strongly agree’ that their child thinks the variety is great, while a majority (56%) ‘somewhat agree’.

Parents appear to place a great deal of importance on the quality of their children’s school library, with almost all (95%) ‘agreeing’ (62% strongly/33% somewhat) that ‘access to up-to-date school library resources positively impacts a child’s future success’. But very few (12%) believe that it is up to teachers and principals to personally ensure that these materials are available to the children ‘agreeing’ (3% strongly/9% somewhat) that ‘teachers and principals should spend their own money to purchase books and learning materials for their students’. Most (88%) parents ‘disagree’ (63% strongly/25% somewhat) with this idea.

These are the findings of an Ipsos Reid poll conducted between August 10 and 17, 2010, on behalf of Indigo. For this survey, a sample of 1,007 adults with kids age 4 to 18 from Ipsos' Canadian online panel was interviewed online. Weighting was then employed to balance demographics and ensure that the sample's composition reflects that of the adult population according to Census data and to provide results intended to approximate the sample universe. A survey with an unweighted probability sample of this size and a 100% response rate would have an estimated margin of error of +/-3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, of what the results would have been had the entire population of parents in Canada been polled. All sample surveys and polls may be subject to other sources of error, including, but not limited to coverage error, and measurement error.

For more information on this news release, please contact:
Sean Simpson
Senior Research Manager
Ipsos Reid Public Affairs
(416) 572-4474

About Ipsos Reid

Ipsos Reid is Canada's market intelligence leader, the country's leading provider of public opinion research, and research partner for loyalty and forecasting and modelling insights. With operations in eight cities, Ipsos Reid employs more than 600 research professionals and support staff in Canada. The company has the biggest network of telephone call centres in the country, as well as the largest pre-recruited household and online panels. Ipsos Reid's marketing research and public affairs practices offer the premier suite of research vehicles in Canada, all of which provide clients with actionable and relevant information. Staffed with seasoned research consultants with extensive industry-specific backgrounds, Ipsos Reid offers syndicated information or custom solutions across key sectors of the Canadian economy, including consumer packaged goods, financial services, automotive, retail, and technology & telecommunications. Ipsos Reid is an Ipsos company, a leading global survey-based market research group.

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Eight in Ten (84%) Canadian Parents Believe Companies Should Donate To and Sponsor Public School Libraries


Sean Simpson
Vice President, Canada
Ipsos Public Affairs