Wednesday, June 5, 2013

ALA, It’s Time to Step Up for School Libraries | Editorial | School Library Journal

ALA, It’s Time to Step Up for School Libraries | Editorial

SLJ1306w Editorial Librarian ALA, It’s Time to Step Up for School Libraries | Editorial  

As the end of the school year approached, the library listserv LM_Net considered several distressing strands: How do you close a library for the summer when it may never reopen; how do you hand off library duties to a nonlibrarian; and how can we transform library service to serve more students with fewer staff? Situations like these result from administrative decision making based on short-term gains—with long-term losses for our kids. Wouldn’t it be nice if these local problems had been countered by a professional association actively engaged in stopping these cuts by providing solid data on the value of school librarians at the highest state and national levels?

As I travel to the American Library Association (ALA) annual conference in Chicago later this month, I will inevitably carry the baggage of an unresolved disconnect. Those of us inside Libraryland know what our K–12 peers deliver, yet that value is clearly not understood by administrators, who are cutting school librarian positions nationwide. I can’t help but think that a key resource is being squandered out of sheer ignorance. Read more....
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