Friday, August 27, 2010

Please do not let this become a reality...act now

Media Release
27 August 2010
The Hub: Campaign for Quality School Libraries in Australia/
Illawarra School Libraries Association

NSW government cuts teacher services to save money

In yet another attempt to bring its financial house in order, the NSW government has ordered a review of services, including those to schools and school libraries. The proposed restructuring to save on duplication will instead eliminate some vital services entirely.

In the past, NSW School Library Services had 10 education officers, 4 librarians and 8 support staff. Both Liberal and Labor governments terminated many such central support services, including regional consultancies. The School Libraries and Information Literacy Unit which remained has had a manager and review coordinator, journal editor, 3 librarians and 2 technicians. Its journal, SCAN, remains the only state teacher curriculum support journal. Its contribution to the national schools cataloguing database is the largest, along with Western Australia.

“In an attempt to save some 7% in costs, half of these positions will be lost,” says Georgia Phillips, co-founder of the Hub: Campaign for Quality School Libraries in Australia. “Not of ‘duplicate services,’ for there is no other body providing advisory services to schools concerning their libraries or reviewing teaching resources. No other body runs professional development targeting teacher librarians and school libraries. No other body advises the NSW DET on library and resource policy.”

“The recent DET exercise in envisioning the future of 21st C school libraries,” says Mrs. Phillips, “was a lengthy collegiate online forum led by overseas and Australian academics. It now seems a wasted effort, its recommendations ignored. Once again money comes before teaching and learning.”

Margaret Cooper, President of the Illawarra School Libraries Association says, “I have been a teacher librarian for 20 years and I am horrified to think that DET will be withdrawing specific support for school libraries under the proposed restructure.”

“Teacher librarians,” says Mrs. Cooper, “are unique members of school staffs. We are virtually on our own and without the support of the School Libraries team, teacher librarians will struggle to provide many learning opportunities.”

“The Unit provides website development support and promotes new digital learning tools to enable students to make sense of the vast amounts of information available on the internet. Having attended one of their courses this year, even my experienced eyes were opened and I have started using new digital tools that I had not had time to research on my own. Yet their training role has been eliminated.”

“Many teacher librarians,” says Mrs. Cooper, “have very limited administration time and without the training and support of the School Libraries Unit, teacher librarians will not be providing the services that 21st century schools need, which is, ironically the aim of the restructure. Why would anyone consider removing the very leadership that will ensure that teachers adopt and use the digital learning tools that our students deserve to encounter in our schools today?”

Jane McKenzie, teacher librarian and assistant principal at the small country school of Quirindi, also expressed her concern. “The Department’s own submission to the federal Inquiry into School Libraries and Teacher Librarians now looks a sham. It affirmed the vital role of school libraries in learning and the need to ‘ensure equity and capacity for libraries as dynamic, high-tech 21C learning centres’ yet now it proposes to undermine these.”

“The unit gives statewide policy and procedural support to school leaders, holds purpose built workshops and generates teaching and learning support materials statewide for teachers,” says Jane.

And Jane asks, “Aren't all public schools, even remote ones, entitled to quality digital and book resources, advice and support on 21st century resource and information services, the best in terms of literature and non-fiction books (e-books and databases) that support authentic, enquiry based learning?”

“Is the name of the game” says Mrs. Phillips, “really about improving learning and literacy, quality teaching and school leadership, or is this only another cost cutting exercise?”

Georgia Phillips, The Hub 0419423570, 42942966
Margaret Cooper President ISLA, 4295 1334, 043-837-7391
Jane McKenzie, Quirindi PS (02)6746 5748, 0429074443
Georgia Phillips
The Hub: Campaign for Quality School Libraries in Australia

Let your objections be known.

We need to email any concerns to:
1. Kim Proctor, Manager, Strategic Projects and works to the General Manager, Learning and Development within the Office of Schools. Learning and Development is the portfolio in which Curriculum K-12 Directorate sits. by 5 pm Tuesday 31 August.

2. By Monday 30th: Director General Coutts-trotter and
Des Gorman, Acting Deputy Director-General

3. Politicians (By Mon 30th)
Senator John Kaye
Rob Oakeshott
Tony Windsor

Thursday, August 26, 2010

We need school libraries and well supported teacher librarians.

 School Library Advocacy Movie-TL Ning by Joyce Valenza

Find more videos like this on TLNing

There is a worrying draft of plans to dismantle School Libraries Information Literacies.
If this draft is accepted SLIL will no longer be supporting TLs-no more Colleen or Lizzie.
I am shocked and very disappointed about the loss of so many valuable services for teachers and teacher librarians.
Received this info the other day...
Des Gorman, Acting Deputy Director-General [], is looking for comments and responses about the proposed NSW CLIC structure, by Monday next week, ie 30th. In addition, please provide the NSW Teachers Federation with a copy of your detailed submission about the value of School Libraries statewide support, so they understand what will be lost and can argue for us. Send to, Attention: David Ferguson.

Proposed: There will be a School Libraries and Info Services team
1. No more specific State wide school libraries support. No more manager's role to set a vision, and communicate with other educational leaders. No more specific website programming/teaching support for teacher librarians. No more specific teaching and learning workshops to support TLs into the 21st century with digital tools and collaboration with classroom teachers. Instead, there is a proposed, Senior Curriculum Support Officer, Information Literacy to be located elsewhere in a Cross Curricula team with no mention of teacher librarians. In the School Libraries and Info Services team, Scan will continue with no review coordinator. The SCIS cataloguing team which currently has 3 librarians will be cut to 2 which will have a massive impact on cataloguing of new records. This team is at the forefront of cataloguing in Australia, cataloguing ebooks, websites, database, books on a huge scale.
Please take the time to let your objections known.

We need to email any concerns to
expand »1. Kim Procter, Manager, Strategic Projects and works to the General Manager, Learning and Development within the Office of Schools. Learning and Development is the portfolio in which Curriculum K-12 Directorate sits. by 5 pm Tuesday 31 August.

2. By Monday 30th: Director General Coutts-trotter and
Des Gorman, Acting Deputy Director-General

3. Politicians (By Mon 30th)

Senator John Kaye
Rob Oakeshott
Tony Windsor
Your own local member...

Building Bridges with your community during Bookweek!!

 Your Child’s School Library: 
What you should know  by Georgia Phillips, co-founder of The Hub:
Campaign for Quality School Libraries in Australia

A quality school library is kid friendly and student focused.

Does your child's school library measure up?
Inquiry into School Libraries and Teacher Librarians in Australian Schools

 For further info on these questions go to Your Child's School Library:What you should know on my Parents-Partners in teaching and learning blog.

The school library is not just a storehouse run by a loans assistant, but a vital learning centre,
operating under the guidance of a dual-trained teacher-librarian*, in partnership with classroom
teachers. *A teacher-librarian holds a recognised teaching qualification AND qualifications in librarianship, with curriculum and pedagogy knowledge combined with library and information management knowledge.

Learning today means more than memorising facts. It means learning to learn for a lifetime. Savvy parents and educators know that the school library is key to teaching students not just to read but to practice the skills they need to seek, evaluate and use information throughout their lives. In fact, research shows those students from schools with professionally staffed, fully equipped libraries score higher on literacy and achievement tests.

  Research shows that children who are read to in the home do better in school.

Support legislators who support libraries and education. Let them know you think the two go together and should be a high priority.
Every Australian student deserves a quality school library with a qualified teacher librarian.
Help spread the word by signing the petition "A Qualified Teacher Librarian in Every School

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Advocacy Statement for School Librarians

NEW! SIGMS has just released a new statement on 

 Special Interest Group Media Specialist (SIGMS) committee incudes: Joyce Valenza, Brenda Anderson - Professional Development Chair, Laurie Conzemius - Communications Chair, Shelee King George - Vice Chair, Lisa Perez - Chair,

SIGMS provides a support network to school library media specialists and others in leadership positions who are working to promote the use of instructional technologies to enhance student learning.

The school library media specialist assists in planning, implementing, and evaluating technology-infused instructional and media programs; maintains a balanced collection of resources in all formats to meet information and curricular needs of students and teachers; and provides physical and intellectual access to information in the school library media center, in the school, and beyond; implements programs to ensure information and technology literacy skills for all students.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Library 2.0-So many exciting......

 Are you ready? Are you there already?So much to see...So much to do...So much to learn...A word of advice for those just starting this journey...The focus must remain on the literacy...improving students' literacy skills!!! Start small...Chunk it out...Manageable bites... Library20
View more presentations from joycevalenza.

So many new ideas for book reviews these days!!

Below are a few of the exciting options being explored by Teacher Librarians for presenting book reports or reviews. 

We can use technology tools to promote the books our students enjoy and encourage others to try them.
I am planning to use these stimulating book review ideas to encourage the kids to use more persuasive language.

With NAPLAN testing the persuasive text in 2011 it is a great way to provide support to classroom learning in literacy.

View some at book reviews at Bookwink by grade level.

There is a wide range of reviews at this Classroombooktalk wiki to enjoy.