‘Bookin’ bus’ will bring library to Otsego kids

Otsego Public Schools, Bookin' Bus
Otsego Public Schools' new Bookin' Bus. (June 8, 2017)

OTSEGO, Mich. (WOOD) — There were probably a few double takes in Otsego Monday as the school district’s new Bookin’ Bus hit the road.

What used to be a school bus is now a mobile library. The goal is to improve kids’ access to books during the summer.

Otsego Public Schools Superintendent Jeffery Haase came up with the idea at the beginning of the school year and put together a team to make it happen.

“Our hope is that when the bus is out two times a week that the students’ excitement will bring them back,” Haase said.

Otsego Public Schools, Bookin' Bus
Inside Otsego Public Schools’ new Bookin’ Bus. (June 8, 2017)

Impressed students checked out the bus last week.

“They had an opportunity to see it when it was yellow and no seats in it and obviously that transformation has taken place to this. The excitement is just awesome,” Haase said.

“It’s on wheels and it moves. It’s a bus with books. Libraries can’t move,” one wowed student observed.

The Bookin’ Bus will roll with purpose: School leaders analyzed reading data from students and scheduled its stops strategically.

“It gives you an opportunity to read more books during the summer,” one student commented.

Otsego Public Schools, Bookin' Bus
Otsego Public Schools’ new Bookin’ Bus. (June 8, 2017)

The bus didn’t cost the district a dime. The $20,000 needed to make it happen came from fundraisers and donations from businesses. Students added the finishing touches, painting a bulldog — the school’s mascot — and paw prints on the bus.

Haase was the first volunteer to drive the bus Monday.