Humble ISD students are using modern applications such as Sora to gain access to the Harris County Public Library system.

Humble ISD has teamed up with Harris County Public Library to modernize reading and literacy through eBooks and audiobooks, with a shared goal of promoting digital learning in the local community.

In a press release, Rakuten Overdrive, which created the Sora app that students can use to access the library system, said, “In this mobile age, technology has become increasingly valuable in supporting new generations of lifelong learners and readers. Now, Humble ISD and Harris County Public Library (HCPL) have formed an innovative new partnership using eBooks and digital 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 HCPL’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.

“This partnership provides safe access to thousands of age-appropriate titles for students’ use inside the classroom, at home and anywhere 24/7. Through the student reading app Sora, Humble ISD students can now borrow the school’s collection of classroom and pleasure reading, and also access HCPL’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.

“We’re very happy to be the first in the Houston area to partner with Sora and Harris County Public Library,” Terry Perkins, deputy superintendent at Humble ISD, said. “This partnership is a win for our students, teachers and community. It will give our students more opportunities to read, research and learn by providing access to more free eBooks and audiobooks.”

“OverDrive – the creator of Sora – is a valued partner in our mission to provide access to resources that enrich lives and strengthen communities, and we are very excited to help increase access to age-appropriate eBooks and audiobooks for Humble ISD students,” Amber Seely, the Harris County Public Library’s division director of Collections and Technical Services, said.

As of now, this partnership has no ending date and will continue for the foreseeable future, so Humble ISD students can continue having unlimited access to both Humble ISD and Harris County libraries even after the school year has ended. 

According to Overdrive, the Sora app was named one of TIME’s Best Inventions 2019 and is available for Humble ISD students to download through the Apple App Store and Google Play Store. It is also available for use in web browsers at soraapp.com.

In addition to Humble ISD students, Harris County residents can access the Harris County Public Library’s complete eBook and audiobook collection without leaving the comfort of their home. They may do so using by using the Libby app, which can be used on any major device or computer. Libby was also built by Overdrive.

Did you know? Humble ISD libraries serve approximately 45,000 students on 45 campuses. The Harris County Public Library system has an annual circulation of over 10 million items and is a network of 26 community-focused branch libraries. Local branches can be found in Atascocita, Humble and Kingwood and are an important part of the Lake Houston community. OverDrive is the leading digital reading platform for libraries and OverDrive Education is the leading global digital reading platform for K-12, both offering the industry’s largest catalog of eBooks, audiobooks, magazines and streaming video. It is a 100% digital company serving 45,000 libraries and schools worldwide.

Sarah Mertins
Author: Sarah MertinsEmail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
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I grew up on a farm in New Mexico and miss eating hot chile and having four seasons. I didn't start college until I was already a mother and double majored in English and anthropology. I received an Honors B.A. from the University of Louisiana-Lafayette and was named “Outstanding Student” in English. My honors thesis is titled “The Enduring and Ever-Changing Legend of La Llorona.” I worked as a police reporter for a bit before staying home in Kingwood to raise my two daughters. My hobbies include reading, gardening, cooking and traveling.

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