The Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals, the British counterpart to the American Library Association, issued jointly with the UK's National Literacy Trust a press release condemning the announced 2012 closure of Hertfordshire Schools Library Services.
Amazon's decision last week to purchase 450 children's book titles from Marshall Cavendish has left librarians wondering how the ecommerce giant will handle the books' distribution channels, and whether they'll still be available from independent bookstores and major library suppliers such as Follett, Mackin and Baker & Taylor.
Full article in School Library Journal
Carl Harvey II writes in In today's Huffington Post:
As the leader of the American Association of School Librarians (AASL) and an educator, I am struck by the lack of support for school libraries from federal and local governments. Do decision makers fully realize how their lack of support will hinder the education of America's next generation? Due to the lack of funding for school libraries, students are at risk of not having some of the most critical 21st century skills needed to compete in the global marketplace.
There is a common misconception that technology replaces school libraries and school librarians. Rather, in reality the explosion of technology and information access makes having full-time access to a state certified school librarian and school library program even more critical for today's learners. There is an entire new skill set today's students will need as they enter the workplace, and school librarians are the leaders in helping teach these skills to students.
Two things are discouraging about young Quebecers' reading skills.
The first is the nationwide-reading test whose results came out this week: Quebec's eighth-graders scored "significantly lower" than Canadian students as a whole. (Quebec's English public schools ranked fifth among the provinces. Their counterparts in French schools fared far more poorly than in the previous test in 2007.)
The other thing that's discouraging is that no solution for this problem exists in Quebec.
The crisis of information literacy, a familiar issue within the library community, is getting some wider attention. In this month’s Wired, Clive Thompson cites a recent study that reveals the paucity of search skills among so-called digital natives at both high school and college levels. Importantly he gets to the vital role school librarians play in fostering information literacy, including the critical approach to content, dubbed “crap detection” by Howard Rheingold.
See article in a School Library Journal
The library at Rowen Elementary School in North Philadelphia is musty and outdated - a locked room used for storage and occasional meetings, a repository of yellowing, untouched books. But Callie Hammond has big dreams for the room, whose leather-bound encyclopedias were printed in 1986, the year she was born. The plan is to start in city elementary schools with no library. Library Build would recruit and pay library science graduates in exchange for a two-year service commitment to city schools.
"Libraries do amazing things," said Hammond, who was a Philadelphia School District middle school teacher until she was laid off in June. Read more at Philly.com.
A Call for Opening Up Web Access at Schools
Students, teachers and librarians across the United States are questioning whether schools should block Web sites.
Entire categories of Web sites had been blocked, including those that involved games, violence, weapons, even swimsuits, said Judy Gressel, a librarian. “It just got to the point that it became hard to conduct research,” she said, adding that students could not read sites about, say, military weapons for a history paper.
School libraries replaced with 'learning commons' (Catholic school system in Ontario)
"We've kept reference materials here (in the library)," school principal David Lozinsky said. "That will help the teachers when they come to a certain point in their curriculum. Whether they're working on research, iPads, let's face it, it's a digital world now, Everything in the school, like books will be online, so there might not be a need for books anymore," he said.
It's September, a time to remind children that we care about them and have high hopes and all that.
So what's going on in Los Angeles Unified? The school district is dumping 227 of its 430 elementary school library aides and cutting the hours of another 193 aides in half.
Welcome back to school, kids.
More from the LA Times.