Schools Storytime arrangement

A special arrangement for school storytimes during the COVID-19 outbreak has been announced by the APA, ASA and the National Copyright Unit.

We believe that all children should be able to enjoy books and stories from their earliest years – and to have this available to everyone, including those without books at home.

What does this mean for teachers?

If you’re a teacher, you’ll be able to continue to read stories to students, whether they’re learning from school or at home.

Schools are now encouraged to livestream storytimes so children won’t miss out on this important and much-loved activity.

Usually, teachers are able to read stories to students in class. Now that classrooms are moving online – things that relate to copyright become a bit more uncertain, so the APA, the ASA, and schools wish to clear up any doubts about how rules apply to remote learning.

So the APA and ASA have asked their publisher and author members to suspend permission requirements for the duration of the pandemic.

What’s the best and fairest way to do storytimes at your school?

  1. Livestream wherever possible – such as Google Classroom, a Zoom call, or Facebook live streaming.
  2. If streaming is not practical – you can make a recording as long as:
    • The recording is “view only” – so no other copies can be made or downloaded.
    • Wherever possible the recording is made available in a password protected access in a digital teaching environment
  3. Provide the book details at the beginning of any livestream or recording – so:
    • Title
    • Author
    • Illustrator
    • Publishers
  4. This policy is temporary – and remains while schools are providing remote learning during the COVID-19 emergency or the conclusion of term 2 (whichever is earlier). Once school resumes normal teaching practices – the Storytime arrangement will no longer be active.

Using these Storytime arrangements, we hope that teachers and educators will be empowered to use Australian made books and to support Australian creators, authors, publishers and booksellers.

If teachers need further information about this Storytime Agreement, or have copyright questions regarding COVID 19, please contact NCU:

Great! I want to do a Storytime – where can I find some ideas?

If you’d like ideas about how to do a Storytime – take a look at these resources:

Want to get involved in a conversation about reading at home? You can also follow and add to the #AustraliaReadsAtHome campaign.

For ASA enquiries, please contact Lucy Hayward, Marketing & Communications Manager:

For APA enquiries please contact Colin Ho, Public Relations & External Communications:

Book industry partners come to agreement on copyright

Books Create Australia, the collaboration between the Australian Booksellers Association (ABA), the Australian Library and Information Association (ALIA), the Australian Publishers Association (APA) and the Australian Society of Authors (ASA) has announced a special arrangement for library storytimes during the COVID-19 outbreak.

For the duration of the pandemic, virtual storytimes will be sanctioned by an industry agreement. It is the policy of the Boards of the APA and ASA that their members suspend any requirements for copyright permission to be sought, in order to allow libraries to make recordings* or livestream storytimes so children aren’t denied this important and much-loved service.

To support libraries delivering storytimes online, ALIA, the APA and the ASA have made this joint statement:

‘The Australian Publishers Association, the Australian Library and Information Association and the Australian Society of Authors share a common goal for all children to be able to enjoy books and stories from the earliest years. Library-run storytimes make this opportunity available to many families, including those without books at home.

‘While the Copyright Act enables the performance of a picture book in some circumstances, the APA, the ALA, and ALIA are taking these steps to clarify any doubts. We value a safe environment, where libraries feel confident to adapt early literacy activities such as storytime for online delivery, via an open livestream or recording.

‘It is the policy of the Australian Publishers Association and the Australian Society of Authors that its members allow such use without any need for specific permission or payment’.

The agreement on virtual storytimes follows on from earlier agreements between ALIA, the APA and the ASA about the delivery of library run storytimes outside library buildings, the use of book covers to promote books and authors, and copying of the pull-out elements of books so as to replace the originals which have been lost by other borrowers.

*All libraries may deliver their Storytime sessions online, through a digital platform, such as Facebook Video, Youtube, Vimeo.

Storytime may either be live streamed or a library may make available a recording of Storytime online, provided that the recording is non-downloadable to the public. If practicable, the live steam or recordings will be made available only to library patrons who have signed in to access their library’s website.

This policy is temporary and will remain in force whilst COVID-19 remains as a WHO-declared pandemic.

Once this period has ended, libraries agree to destroy all recordings, and take down any online recordings. Libraries agree to provide bibliographic details of the featured book with any published recording of Storytime, including the title, author, illustrator and publisher.This image is putting the logos and names of the organisation at the top of the page to make it seem more authoritative and represent the interest groups