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School Library Design: Circulation Desks

Things to Consider

The circulation desk is the point of service and the first piece of furniture students see upon entering the library. It should be attractive as well as functional.


  • Computer unit
  • Cabinet unit
  • Open Shelf unit
  • Book Return unit (with depressible book truck beneath)
  • Drawer unit
  • Kneespace unit
  • Corner unit

Counter Height

  • Lower for elementary and higher for secondary schools
  • Multiple heights

Cord Containment


Circulation desk - elementary

Book Trucks

Standard sloping book trucks are used for reshelving books. They come in metal or wood in a variety of styles. We recommend:

  • at least two (one for fiction/one for nonfiction)
  • double-sided

Depressible book trucks or book return carts are used beneath the Book Drop unit of the circulation desk.

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