Borrowing from us

Books from National Library's school lending service on display at a workshop.

Image: All rights reserved.

Expand your classroom or school library and keep it fresh and relevant. Use our expertise to get books that will inform and inspire your students’ inquiry and develop their love of reading. Find out if you qualify to use our service.

Why borrow from us

Our main schools lending collection contains more than 500,000 fiction and non-fiction books, carefully selected by our librarians with knowledge of The New Zealand Curriculum and the best literature to engage children and young adults.

Schools and home educators who use our lending service can:

  • offer more for their students than their library alone could provide
  • access fresh selections of books at a fraction of what it would cost to buy.

Access fresh, appealing, relevant books

Our school lending collections:

  • contain books for every learning area of The New Zealand Curriculum
  • include high-interest, engaging items that will appeal to readers of all ages and abilities
  • are constantly updated with fresh, high-quality books that reflect changes in the curriculum and reading needs (e.g. books in world languages and the latest accessible formats).

Use our expertise, expand your resource base

When you borrow from us, you're able to:

  • rely on the expertise of our staff (trained librarians, former teachers) to curate your loans with relevant and engaging books to support learning and reading for pleasure
  • supplement your school's existing resources and library collection, giving you even more books for staff and students to use at school or at home
  • make good use of your school resource budget:
    • our service is free, and we don't charge for overdue, damaged, or lost books from our main lending collection
    • books are delivered free to you — you pay return costs only, using discounted delivery rates offered through NZ Post
    • borrow from us as a way to assess books before you buy your own copy.

Who can borrow

All New Zealand schools on the Ministry of Education schools list and registered home educators can borrow books from us.

Ministry of Education schools list

Home educators must have a current Certificate of Exemption From Enrolment at a Registered School from the Ministry of Education.

Home educators — how to borrow books

School staff borrow through their school loan coordinator(s)

Teachers, teacher trainees, or school librarians borrow books from us through their school loan coordinator(s).

School loan coordinators play a key role in requesting, managing, and returning your National Library loans. Schools nominate up to 2 loan coordinators to be their central point of contact for our lending service. Coordinators request books for their schools using our online lending form.

School loan coordinator role

School loan coordinators — how to use our lending service

How to borrow — a simple process, with 0800 support

Diagram illustrating the lending process. See 'Diagram description' below.
  • Diagram description

    A flow diagram showing steps within the lending process as follows:

    Every term

    1. Work with teachers to plan your requests.
    2. Create and submit requests online.
    3. Use the books in the library, classrooms, or at home.
    4. Return books when they're due back.

    As needed

    • Set up your school's loan coordinators when staff change.
    • Buy NZ Post ticket books when you need more.

Diagram description

A flow diagram showing steps within the lending process as follows:

Every term

  1. Work with teachers to plan your requests.
  2. Create and submit requests online.
  3. Use the books in the library, classrooms, or at home.
  4. Return books when they're due back.

As needed

  • Set up your school's loan coordinators when staff change.
  • Buy NZ Post ticket books when you need more.

You can contact our Capability Facilitators if you need help using our service Monday to Friday, 8am to 5pm:

What you can borrow — more about our borrowing options and the types of books you can borrow.

NZ Post service for deliveries and returns

The National Library has an arrangement with NZ Post for the door-to-door delivery and return of books to New Zealand schools.

The National Library pays the cost of delivering books to schools, but schools pay the return costs using NZ Post discounted delivery rates.

Features of the NZ Post service include:

  • email notification when your box(es) of books leave the National Library
  • track-and-trace progress of your loan
  • door-to-door delivery
  • competitive delivery charges within the same island for returning books — and once a school has an account with NZ Post, you can use this service for your other delivery needs too.

Return your books to us — more about NZ Post's delivery costs and how to use their service.

Topic Explorer, AnyQuestions, and other online resources

Find quality, curated curriculum resources, online schoolwork help for students, exemplars and tools for inquiry, resource guides, and more.

Teaching and learning resources

Any questions or need help?