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Building Partnerships: School Libraries & Public Libraries

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  1. Building Partnerships:School Libraries & Public Libraries

  2. Beth Wheeler Dean Schooling • B.S. in Accounting, Mississippi University for Women • M.L.S., University of Alabama Experience • 25 years in public libraries • Adjunct Instructor, University of Alabama, SLIS • 20 years working with children in libraries, schools and churches

  3. Kimberley L. Jones, M.S.L.I.S. Schooling • B.S. in Liberal Studies from Athens State College • M.S. in Library & Information Science from University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign Experience • 7 years in Public Libraries • 8 years in School Libraries

  4. The Nuts and Bolts of the Public Library • Basic Characteristics • Population Served • Political Climate • Funding

  5. Basic Characteristics • Using the public library is a choice and consequently must be perceived as a value to the patron. • Public libraries serve multiple needs within a community. • Public libraries should have changed significantly in the last ten years. • Public libraries are now charged with serving patrons that do not enter their facilities.

  6. Population Served Everyone

  7. Political Climate • Funding for public libraries is tied directly to governmental funding sources. • Public libraries seldom have guaranteed funding and must request funds from local government every fiscal year. • Public libraries must constantly balance local political views and issues with needs of patrons for information and materials.

  8. Funding • There’s never enough money, staff, or resources. • A significant amount of time, personnel and resources must be used to maintain funding levels. • Public libraries must constantly looking for new sources of money.

  9. The School Library Environment • Alabama PEPE Job Goal • PEPE Performance Responsibilities • Relating to School & Public Library Collaboration • ALA’s “Position Statement on the Value of Independent Reading” • Encouraging a Life-long Love of Reading • A School LMS Should …

  10. Library Media Specialist’s “Job Goal”(According to Alabama PEPE) “To help students learn subject matter and skills that will contribute to their development as mature, able, responsible members of society and to provide for student and teacher utilization of a comprehensive program of library media skills and services.” Appendix A, Library Media Specialist Evaluation Manual, PEPE of Alabama

  11. Performance Responsibilities(relating to School and Public Library collaboration) The following items are taken from the ALSDE School LMS job description • Determines individual, class, and school needs. • Exhibits positive human relations skills. • Communicates with parents/guardians, colleagues, and community groups. Appendix A, Library Media Specialist Evaluation Manual, PEPE of Alabama

  12. According to ALA’s “Position Statement on the Value of Independent Reading in the School Library Media Program”: • Many of today’s students have little or no interest in reading for pleasure. Most reading is done because it is required, and therefore students do not possess a love of reading. • School Library Media programs must work with teachers, parents, and the community in order to help generate life-long pleasure in reading. From ALA’s “Position Statement on the Value of Independent Reading in the School Library Media Program.” http://www.ala.org/ala/aasl/aaslproftools/positionstatements/aaslpositionstatementvalueindependent.cfm

  13. According to the American Library Association, a School LMS should: • endeavor to facilitate student enjoyment of reading. • encourage students to read for fun. • promote the reading of books that challenge students’ thinking and reading skills. From ALA’s “Position Statement on the Value of Independent Reading in the School Library Media Program.” http://www.ala.org/ala/aasl/aaslproftools/positionstatements/aaslpositionstatementvalueindependent.cfm

  14. How can School Library Media Specialists encourage a love of reading? Students need . . . • access to current, quality high-interest, and extensive collections of books and other print materials in their library media centers, classrooms, and public libraries. • contact with adults who read regularly and widely and who serve as positive reading role models. From ALA’s “Position Statement on the Value of Independent Reading in the School Library Media Program.” http://www.ala.org/ala/aasl/aaslproftools/positionstatements/aaslpositionstatementvalueindependent.cfm

  15. How can School Library Media Specialists encourage a love of reading? Students need . . . • certified school library media specialists and classroom teachers who demonstrate their enthusiasm for reading by reading aloud and book-talking. • time during the school day dedicated to reading for pleasure, information and exploration. From ALA’s “Position Statement on the Value of Independent Reading in the School Library Media Program.” http://www.ala.org/ala/aasl/aaslproftools/positionstatements/aaslpositionstatementvalueindependent.cfm

  16. How can School Library Media Specialists encourage a love of reading? Students need . . . • opportunities specifically designed to engage them in reading. • schools that create an environment where independent reading is valued, promoted, and encouraged. • opportunities that involve caregivers, parents, and other family members in reading. From ALA’s “Position Statement on the Value of Independent Reading in the School Library Media Program.” http://www.ala.org/ala/aasl/aaslproftools/positionstatements/aaslpositionstatementvalueindependent.cfm

  17. The Starting Point • What You Bring to the Table • What You Get for the Effort • Going By the Book • Playing Well with Others • Why it Matters

  18. Public Library Larger Collections Research Experience & Research Collections After-School Hours Different Perspective to the same problems School Library Students Parents Teachers Essentially, more Patrons What You Bring to the Table

  19. Public Library More Circulation Larger Audience for Web Presence “Brand” Recognition Students and parents know you on sight School Library Students will maintain reading ability over the breaks. A Different Voice A Fresh Face What You Get for the EffortA Greater Impact

  20. Going By the Book • Begin with informal communication • Start with who you will be working with, not the administration • Seek input from the population you want to serve. (i.e. teachers, students, and library staff) • Keep your administration aware of the project and all school responsibilities.

  21. Playing Well with Others • Know who you are • Be true to your mission and goals. • Do what you do best • Use everyone’s talents. • Stick with it • Give it time to see results—”the masses” will not appear overnight. • Follow through • Don’t make promises you can’t keep.

  22. Why It Matters • The kids. • Creating life-long learners and life-long library users • The community should not pay for the same resources two times. • Collaboration means big points in grant proposals. • More advocates for school libraries and public libraries. • Cooperation makes everyone look good.

  23. Building Partnerships • Finding Friends • Selling the Administration (Both of them) • Selling the Faculty/Staff • Selling the Community • Selling the Kids

  24. Finding Friends • Find out about organizations associated with either group • Library schools • Never underestimate a contact • Check out local websites • Don’t be afraid to make the first move

  25. Selling the Administration(Both of Them) • It takes time on both sides • Sell the benefits • Possible cynic scenarios: • “They don’t give us money.” (PL) • “There’s not enough time in the day.” (Schools) • “It takes too much time and effort.” (Both) • You must allow time for the programs to take effect • You know fairly quickly whether someone wants to work with you

  26. Selling the Faculty/Staff • Think outside the box • Make it easy and worth their while • Teachers already have so much on their plates • Teachers need to know what they get out of the partnership

  27. Selling the Community • Parents need to see you and recognize you • Make it worth their while to bring their kids to you • Don’t waste their time

  28. Selling the Kids • Excite the students • You love them, and they’ll love you • Be genuine • “Brand” Recognition

  29. The More the Merrier • Stay True to Yourself • Bringing Your “A” Game • Enlarging the Circle • Being a Team Player

  30. Staying True to Yourself • You are there to enrich and expand services • Do your job • Let the other LMS do his/her job and you do yours • Don’t wait for someone to come to you • Don’t be afraid to ask

  31. Bringing Your “A” Game • Do your best • Plan ahead • Follow through

  32. Enlarging the Circle • Cooperate • Share • Enjoy being part of a group • Ask for help, ideas, and suggestions

  33. Being a Team Player • Don’t expect to be “Queen” every day. • Share the work, share the credit. • Be loyal to team members. • Make it fun for all.

  34. Successes and Failures • Sometimes it works… • Storytelling at Fall Festival • Read Across America • Extra resources for teachers • Sometimes it doesn’t… • Homework Central • Motheread • Sometimes it just doesn’t work

  35. Online Resources • ALSC School/Public Library Cooperative Programs http://www.ala.org/ala/alsc/alscresources/forlibrarians/SchoolPLCoopProgs.htm • Public Library / Local School Partnershipshttp://midhudson.org/funding/marketing/School_Library_Partnerships.htm • Online Journals for School Librarianshttp://www.nypl.org/branch/services/JournalsForSchoolLibrarians.html • Together: Librarians and Teachers as Education Partners http://www.edukatetodd.com/cooperation/

  36. GO FOR IT!!