FRANKFORT All K-12 students and teachers in Kentucky will now have free access to the Kentucky Virtual Library, an online portal of educational resources that can support learning and lessons at home, the Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education announced Tuesday.

The CPE made the resource available because of the coronavirus pandemic, which has closed all schools in the state.

The Kentucky Virtual Library is a consortium of nearly 300 institutions from across the state. Content includes academic journals, encyclopedias, magazines, e-books, research, and materials for building skills and preparing for tests.

“The Council is tapping every available resource to assist students, parents and educators during this time,” said CPE President Aaron Thompson. “It’s absolutely critical that we harness the power of digital content through remote learning opportunities. I’m confident we will overcome these challenges, but it will require swift action and innovative thinking at every level.”

While most K-12 and college students were already eligible to use the Virtual Library, the move will expand access to an additional 147,000 public school students and seven public libraries in Kentucky that have not previously benefited. In addition, private schools can contact KYVL to request login information for their students without charge.

The changes will remain in effect until the end of the academic year.

On the Virtual Library’s website, students can search for articles, research specific topics or browse well-known titles, such as Scholastic GO! and Encyclopedia Britannica. Materials are available for students at all levels — from elementary grades through college and beyond, including adult learners, those entering the job market and those studying in health care.

The site also offers an online chat feature, allowing users to request help with navigating the library and finding resources.

Students, parents and educators have two options to access the Virtual Library.

First option: (For users with a verifiable email address from a Kentucky school, college or university, library or government agency.)

• Users with an email address such as name@stu.fayette.kyschools.us, name@louisville.edu or name@uky.edu should visit KYVL.org to obtain a password. The homepage includes a section called “Quick Links.” In that section, users should click on the link called “Password Request.”

•  A prompt will appear asking for the user’s email address. Users should enter their information, click “Request Password,” and wait for an automatic reply in their inbox. That reply will include a username and password if the user’s email address is verifiable.

• After receiving a password, users can browse the website, select databases and materials, or use the search box at the top of the homepage. When prompted, users can log in using the username and password.

Second option:

• If users do not have an eligible email address, they may contact their local public library or private school librarian for assistance in obtaining a username and password.

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