Los Angeles Unified schools are in a funk – some libraries may have their hours slashed while other libraries will be shut down altogether, leaving school children with fewer places to turn to for help with their homework.

These will be some of the sobering facts that Emerson Middle School children will be learning about at this afternoon's “Save the Libaries” protest.

To bring attention to their plight, students, parents, the PTA, LAUSD Board member Steve Zimmer and others will be on hand for

a “read in,” a spelling bee and “Dewey Decimal” scavenger hunt. They also will be reviewing the history of civil disobedience during a “flashlight vigil.”

Consider it a protest-lite for pre-teens. “It'll be a sit-in but we'll try to be active,” said parent, Barbara Kaye.

The event lasts until 9 pm tonight.

Kay was among the many parents who were upset after finding out Emerson may lose its library staff due to the LA School District's budget cuts. “I was appalled! We're trying to get the word out.”

Already the school, which has about 1,000 students, has had to do without a librarian this year.

But with more cuts to come, the campus may lose its library aid, too.

“Unless there's funding through the Booster club, then the (position) goes away.”

That will translate to less help for students as well as teachers being called in to assist them in the library.

Kaye isn't sure what they will do if the staffing cuts occur, but she is hoping that events like these will raise awareness so that the school district doesn't take away anymore from libraries.

“These are the first steps,” she said.

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