Drone delivery service will soon start dropping books to kids in Virginia

For many school librarians, getting kids to read over the summer can be a challenge, but a librarian in Christiansburg, Virginia, has found an ingenious way to get kids to read more: drones.

In a hope that watching a drone deliver books to their house will entice kids to read more, middle-school librarian Kelly Passek reached out to Google’s drone delivery service, Wing, to have it drop library books on their doorsteps. “I think kids are going to be just thrilled to learn that they are going to be the first in the world to receive a library book by drone,” she said.

Passek was one of Wing’s first drone delivery recipients and also helped organize book deliveries via school buses for students after the COVID-19 pandemic forced the area’s schools to close.

Libraries are the only way for some students to have access to books — e-readers might be too expensive for some families, and buying books online isn’t cheap either.

Having some sort of library book delivery service is essential to make sure children continue to have access to books. There are currently 600 district students living within Google’s delivery area who could benefit from this service.

And while it’s still unclear how long the delivery program will last, Passek is currently taking requests via Google Forms. She is also scouring the district’s libraries for requested books, packaging them up, and dropping them off at Wing’s facility herself.

As a bonus, students who receive books don’t have to return them until school starts up again in the fall. What the return method will look like is unclear, but for now, students can enjoy some good summer reads without leaving their homes.

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