Under the guidance of the CA Department of Public Health and San Diego County’s Public Health Officer, 12 San Diego Public Library locations are open for limited in-person services Monday – Saturday, 9:30 am to 5:30 pm and will be closed from 1-2 pm for cleaning.  Online library servicesContactless Holds Pickup, and all book drops are available to the public. Find specific information on operations.


San Diego

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Student EXCEL Card

The Student EXCEL Card program is a collaborative effort between San Diego Public Library and San Diego Unified School District with the goal to get a library card in the hands of every student in the district by 2025. Beginning Winter 2020, students at 5 Elementary Schools listed below will receive Student EXCEL cards.
Chollas-Mead Elementary
Encanto Elementary
Horton Elementary
Johnson Elementary
Webster Elementary
With the Student EXCEL card you can:
Borrow up to 3 books/audiobooks at any of the 36 library locations
Get help from a homework tutor on HelpNow!
Receive public computer access at any of the 36 library locations
No fines or fees
Student EXCEl card
Starting in the fall of 2020, more San Diego Unified Schools will be added to the Student EXCEL Card program. Schools and parents will be notified at that time. Our goal is to expand to all SDUSD schools within 5 years.
For more information about EXCEL, please see letter from our Library Director, Misty Jones.
Director's Letter Introducing EXCEL Student Library Cards: PDF icon English | PDF icon Español

Frequently Asked Questions

How does my child use their library card?

He/she will need to bring their EXCEL card along with their student ID # into any of our 36 public library locations to activate.

  • Library Card #
  • Pin - Birth month and birthday (Example: May 1 is 0501)

What student information will San Diego Unified School District share with the San Diego Public Library?

  1. Student’s Name
  2. School
  3. Student ID Number
  4. Student’s Date of birth

The San Diego Public Library has signed an agreement not to share student information with other entities.

What if I want my child to have full access to San Diego Public Library services and materials?

The EXCEL Card will provide full access on online resources and borrowing limits are set at 3 books. A full access SDPL card gives your child access to up to 40 items. If you would like to receive a traditional, full access card, you may do so by visiting any SDPL location.

What if my child already has a San Diego Public Library Card?

If your child already has a card with SDPL, then your child will have two cards and can use both as needed.

What if I don’t want my child to participate in the EXCEL Library Card Program?

If you do not want your child to have a library account, simply do not activate the card and return to your child’s teacher. Your student’s account will be deleted if the card is not activated.

What if my child loses his/her card?

Your child can visit any SDPL library location with their student ID # and will be issued a new card at no cost.

Where do I return books that I check out from the San Diego Public Library?

They need to be returned to any of the 36 library locations.

How long can my child use the card?

Students can use their card until they turn 19 years of age. However, accounts will expire every two years and can be renewed by bringing the EXCEL card or the Student ID number to the library.


For questions about the Student EXCEL library card, please email SDLBExcel@sandiego.gov.


San Diego Unified School District