Who Chooses the Shortlist

This annual award wouldn’t exist without the dedication of the team of Library Staff who run it and it is something that they work on throughout out the year. As a team we are constantly reading books that meet the shortlist criteria so that we are looking forward to who will be on next year’s shortlist. This reading takes place outside of working hours and is something that the team does because they support and are passionate about the award. If they didn’t do this then shortlisting potential books would be extremely difficult and we would not read enough books to be able to create a fair and diverse shortlist that meets our criteria and provides fantastic reading for pleasure opportunities to the children that take part.


This year’s judges are:

Angela Foster – Children & Young Person’s Librarian
Deb Branson – Branch Librarian
Nichola Davey – Branch Librarian
Lucie Lightfoot – Branch Librarian
Ivan Limon – Branch Librarian
Cath Watkins – Branch Librarian


SCBY Timetable:

The judges are constantly reading books for the next year’s shortlist so we are keeping up to dates with new publications.

For Stockton Children’s Book of the Year 2019 we are looking at books published in paperback from the 1st June 2017 to 31st May 2018 that meet the criteria.

For Stockton Children’s Book of the Year 2020 we are looking at books published in paperback from the 1st June 2018 to 31st May 2019 that meet the criteria.


How the annual Award runs during the academic year:

September: Stockton Libraries contact School asking them to show an expression of interest to be part of that year’s SCBY and they are sent a form to fill in and given a deadline to return it to the library service.

October/November: The SCBY Library team look at the schools expression of interests and then confirm the schools they are able to work with for that year, we then order the books and organise a first visit into each school to introduce the project to the children taking part. Each school is allocated a member of library staff who will work with them throughout the project.

November to March: The children in all the participating schools read the shortlisted books so that they can vote for their favourite in March. The children read the books during school time and at home.

January: The allocated member of library staff for each school will visit the children for a second time to see how they are enjoying the books, discuss the shortlist and answer any questions that the children and teachers might have.

March: During a third visit to the school the children will then vote for their favourite to win this year’s SCBY, the votes are then counted and the winner is chosen. There is then an Award Day and Ceremony which all of the shortlisted authors attend and the winner of SCBY is announced. During the Award Day each child gets to meet one of the shortlisted authors and 2 children for each school attend an Award Ceremony at Stockton Central Library for the Best Effort and the Best Book Review for their group. An overall winning Book Review out of all the schools is then chosen by the SCBY team and they are presented with a shield to take back to school for the next year.

April to September: Over this time the SCBY team will continue to read books for the next shortlist and contact publishers for submissions. We will then contact authors to invite them to be part of the shortlist on the condition that they are able to attend the Award Ceremony. As inclusion on the shortlist is dependent upon acceptance of the invitation to attend, as the chance to meet authors in the flesh is such an important part of the award for the children that we feel it must be part of the criteria for inclusion on the short-list.