This may be the second or third time we\'ve run this type of story, and for some reason they always seem to focus on School Librarians. Never any mention of the shortage driving salaries up, however.
\"The challenge has just been staying abreast,\" Walls said. \"Things change so fast. . . . That\'s been the hardest thing, the most exciting thing too.\"
Award-winning children\'s book author and National Children\'s Book and Literacy Alliance founder Mary Brigid Barrett will make the case for improving school libraries this Saturday at the National Book Festival in Washington:
Libraries and librarians are in the forefront of literacy outreach, Barrett says. While organizations that give children books are providing a valuable service, they can never replace libraries. \'\'Giving a child one or two books is like giving him one free breakfast when he\'s starving,\'\' she said. School libraries are particularly needed today, because most children cannot walk to their public libraries. Libraries in urban areas may present a safety threat, and in rural areas, the distances are often too great.
Barrett says that her work with senators Jack Reed, a Rhode Island Democrat, and Thad Cochran, a Mississippi Republican, on legislation to increase funding for school libraries has revealed some disturbing information . . .
Katie Dean writes...
\"Over the next year, schools will be in danger of losing precious technology funding unless they can certify they have a filtering system that blocks obscene websites.
The Children\'s Internet Protection Act requires that by Oct. 28, schools must certify that they are either in compliance with filtering requirements, or are in the process of becoming compliant by evaluating blocking software. For many schools, it will be easy to comply. According to the Consortium for School Networking, 75 percent of schools use filtering already.\" more... from Wired News.
For The Tribune Chronicle, John Booth writes...
\"By next fall, students in Trumbull County, OH will have a card catalog at their fingertips that stretches from Bloomfield to Hubbard, from Kinsman to Newton Falls. The final pieces of the puzzle are ready to fall into place, thanks to grant money enabling 16 school libraries in four districts to automate their card catalogs and link their computers to a countywide network. Federal Library Services and Technology Act funds awarded through the State Library of Ohio will provide more than $156,000 for the projects. In order to earn the grant, the schools had to agree to spend one-quarter of the funding - just more than $52,000.\" more...
Tanya writes \"There is a happy ending to this story I sent in earlier in the week. School librarians in Jeff Parish will not be shifted to new jobs after all. Read about it here:
The items adopted would increase the student/teacher ratio in classrooms to 28-1 and eliminate some overstaffed clerical positions. The possibility of having their jobs cut brought several librarians to the meeting. Most said they were ecstatic with the outcome.
Tanya writes \"I found this story
while catching up on the news from my former
stomping grounds. The Jeff Parish School System, of
which I\'m a product, is considering cutting librarian
positions in the elementary schools due to budget
problems. Supposedly the culprit is rising health care
costs. Also on the cutting block are athletic programs
and custodial and clerical positions. Just as in Salt
Lake a few weeks ago, the librarians will be moved to
teaching positions. The article contains some great
quotes from people who oppose the move such as this
\"Of all the proposals, Roberts said he is most opposed
to cutting librarians
because of their influence on academics.\"
And this one:
\"Losing the librarians and sports would have the most
negative impact on
children, said Sally Falcone...\"
Read the story HERE
Earlier this month, there was a story about the very funny site of Biblia, the Warrior Librarian, written by a school librarian and full of good stuff. Now, \"in an effort to compete with sites that look nicer than Biblia\'s old site\" Biblia is getting a major makeover and the site is now called Warrior Librarian Weekly. It\'s well worth a look, there\'s some great new content there too. Following Biblia\'s example...(there is no more to read).
A Brunswick, Georgia school board is considering banning books that contain profanity. The biggest offender is Salinger\'s \"Catcher in the Rye,\" which contains references to homosexuality, drinking and probably the f-word. Ya know, I\'ve never even read that book. [more...] from ABC News.
Tanya writes \"This is a follow-up to an earlier story. The Granite School District has opted to move librarians to teacher positions and staff the media centers with library-aides after the teachers union rejected a 1.4% raise as being too low. The story will be available at the Salt Lake Tribune website for the next week\"
Utah seems to hate school librarians. They say few of Utah\'s 40 districts have full-time librarians working in elementary schools, and this district only requires one librarian for every two or three schools.
Tanya writes \"The Granite School District Board of Education in Salt Lake City, UT has voted to eliminate school librarian positions if the local teachers association requests a pay raise over 1.4%. Have the board members been watching the Sopranos to brush up on their strongarm tactics? This is the classic, \"If you do what I say, I won\'t shoot the girl\" scenario. According to the Board Report, if the teachers association wants higher raises, the 35 librarians will be moved to teaching positions and the media centers will be staffed with media \"assistants\" who will be paid hourly. The claim is that this move will save $1 million dollars (imagine Dr. Evil\'s glee!)
To read the report visit granite.k12.ut.us
then click on BOARD REPORT about halfway down the page.