Library updates printing system, waives fees

Grant Raffel, Author

The library bought two new printers to replace its old one.
The library bought two new printers to replace its old one.

The days of scrambling for a print card are over for the foreseeable future as the Palo Alto High School library has overhauled its printing system and eliminated fees.

Thanks to a new log-in system installed on the library computers where students can use their Schoology username and password, the library can monitor how many pages students print.

“The log-ins actually enable us to use the printing system a little easier,” Librarian Rachel Kellerman said. “Once somebody’s logged in the system picks it up.”

The new system has made it possible for the library to waive the printing fee so students no longer have to foot the bill for printing their papers, Kellerman said.

“The only reason we were charging for printing was because there was so much waste that the library was paying hundreds and hundreds of dollars a month on wasted printing,” she said. “So we were having to set quotas for free printing and everything else was extra. We’re hoping that if we don’t have waste and that people are printing at about the quota that we won’t have to charge because we really don’t want to charge people for printing.”

The library instituted the old print card system in August 2010 aiming to reduce waste.

The library got rid of its previous printer, which Kellerman estimates was 15 years old, in favor of two new Hewlett Packard printers. These are capable of printing double-sided pages in an effort to further reduce waste.

Kellerman feels that waste has been reduced since the new system was introduced. However, during the interim between the card system and the new system, students wasted many pages of printing.

Printing will continue to be free of charge unless waste again significantly increases, Kellerman said.

“We’re just asking people to print things at home when they can and not to print anything extra and to just to be conscious of the environment,” she said.