Orange Park, FL

New book vending machine offered at Lakeside Elementary in honor of Literacy Week

Zoey Fields

Lakeside Elementary School in Orange Park celebrated “Literacy Week” by unveiling a new book vending machine that allows students to purchase a book with tokens they earn for good behavior and academics.

Principal Dawn Wolfe, Media Specialist Kelly Jernigan, Art Teacher Chad Perry and retired Physical Education teacher Kim Tracanna-Breault made a video that was posted on Facebook to announce the new vending machine and display how it works.

The vending machine is unique in the fact that it is the first one in Clay County District Schools, but also because the wrap design on the machine was designed and created by Art Teacher Perry, Principal Wolfe said in the Facebook video.

The machine was revealed during Florida school’s Literacy Week—an effort designed to raise awareness about the importance of reading and to inspire Florida’s students and families to make reading part of their daily routines, according to the Florida Department of Education.

One token equals one book, as displayed in the video by a Lakeside 6th-grader, Clay County District Schools Communications Coordinator Terri Dennis said. Parents cannot send money in exchange for a book, she said. Tokens must be earned by each individual student.

Books inside the vending machine are chosen by the media specialist following school board policy, Dennis said.

“If a book challenge was to occur, we would follow the established school board procedure for a book being challenged,” she said.

A school board policy was adopted in August 2021, that allows Clay County District Schools parents to submit a form challenging a book, so long as the title and page number with questionable material is provided for media specialists to review. Books challenged by parents are removed from library shelves until a review is complete. The same will apply to books within the vending machine, Dennis said.

Click here to be taken to the Lakeside Elementary Facebook page.
Lakeside Elementary students have to hearn tokens to be able to purchase a book from the vending machine.Photo byClay County District Schools

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Jacksonville, FL

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