Public libraries = back-to-school help

public library image
Image by “>Pixabay. Used with permission.

Everybody is back in school now—first-time kindergarteners, elementary and middle schoolers, high school and college students. The good news is, public libraries have a lot of resources that all these budding scholars can use to get homework and research papers done, including the ability to live-chat with a subject expert through “Live Homework Help.”

That program, and OWL (Online with Libraries) both were restored in HB 2001 after originally being cut by Gov. Michael J. Dunleavy. According to news reports, their total cost is $809,100. OWL ($670,900) provides state funds that link with federal and local funds to build capacity of public libraries around the state to support broadband internet services and supply videoconferencing capability for Alaskans. This program also helps provide student access to computers after school.

“Live Homework Help” ($138,200) provides online tutoring services to help Alaska students perform in courses, participate in statewide initiatives such as the Alaska Performance Scholarship Awards, meet goals, and prepare for post-secondary success.

These are just two of dozens of information databases students can tap into through the SLED (State Library Electronic Doorway) platform.

On today’s Hometown Alaska, we host three library resource experts: the youth services librarian from Loussac, the dean of the UAA/APU Consortium Library, and Alaska’s own state librarian, calling in from Juneau. Together, they will describe and elaborate on the free resources Alaska’s libraries have available for the state’s aspiring students of all ages. They are also here to answer your questions about how to access these resources, or how parents can help their younger scholars succeed.

As always, your questions and comments are welcome throughout the program. Join us, and learn more about how Alaska public libraries support education.

HOST: Kathleen McCoy


  • Elizabeth Nicolai, Anchorage Public Library youth services coordinator
  • Stephen Rollins, dean, UAA/APU Consortium Library
  • Patience Frederiksen, Alaska state librarian (calling in from Juneau)


  • SLED (State Library Electronic Doorway) website
  • Live Homework Help (chat with an online subject expert), avail 7 days a week, noon-2 a.m. Alaska time, website
  • College student resources on SLED, website
  • High school resources on SLED, website
  • Middle school resources on SLED, website
  • Elementary school resources on SLED,website
  • A-Z database listings (these resources, more than 50 databases dealing with car repair, alternative and traditional medicine, philosophy and religion, biography, age-targeted reading lists for students etc, are licensed for all Alaska residents to use), website
  • Alaska Digital Archives, website


  • Call 550-8433 (Anchorage) or 1-888-353-5752 (statewide) during the live broadcast (2:00 – 3:00pm)
  • Send e-mail to before, during or after the live broadcast (e-mails may be read on air)
  • Post your comment or question below (comments may be read on air
  • LIVE: Monday, September 9, 2019 at 2:00 p.m
  • RE-AIR: Monday, September 9, 2019 at 8:00 p.m.
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