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For Jess deCourcy Hinds, a a school librarian and freelance writer from Long Island City, back to school means only one thing: handing out 3,500 textbooks and begging students to treat them kindly. She writes in the NYTimes Cityroom blog:
I am still in shock from June, when a parent returned his daughter’s 10th-grade English text. It looked just like its name: “Things Fall Apart.” Ripped and torn, its cover was splattered with tomato sauce, as if it had been shot in the heart. My horrified expression did not register with the student’s father. “Do we owe you anything?” he asked. Flummoxed, I just smiled and issued his daughter full credit for returning her books.
In late August, we educators should be thinking about how to spark students’ love of learning — not peeling bubble gum off books or scrubbing “Macbeth” with the obsessiveness of Lady M. herself.
Since the recession, library use — and book abuse — have skyrocketed. I’ve found younger generations to be avid readers, but as products of the digital age, they don’t always respect the physicality of books. They dog-ear pages with the impulsiveness of clicking a mouse, not realizing that their actions have permanent consequences. Kindle-reading parents may have also forgotten the basics of book care.
A Redding (CA) School District librarian accused of embezzling and stealing from a school and parent club has not been placed on leave, an administration official said Wednesday.
Wanell Stolz is still working as an information specialist at Juniper Elementary and Cypress Elementary schools, district Superintendent Diane Kempley said before a special board meeting called to discuss “various employee evaluations” in closed session Wednesday.
Two parents who arrived at the meeting late and did not address the board said while the board was in closed session that they are concerned about having Stolz, who was arrested last week, working around their children.
“With everything that is going on with her case, I really don’t think she should be working with kids,” said Alisha Woodruff, who has two children who will be attending Juniper School when classes begin next week. The accused librarian is the wife of Redding School District Board of Trustees President Rein Stolz. Redding.com.
Speaking of ebooks, do you use them in your library? And wouldn't you like to know how widespread their use is in libraries?
LJ/SLJ is taking a survey and wants your participation. It is designed to measure current and projected ebook availability in libraries, user preferences in terms of access and subjects, and library purchasing terms and influences. This survey is open to all types of libraries, and high level results will presented during LJ/SLJ's first ever virtual summit, ebooks: Libraries at the Tipping Point to be held on September 29, 2010. Detailed results will also be reported in LJ and SLJ later in the fall.
Contest ends September 3. Prizes...including an iPad for one lucky sucker...for your participation! Start here.
EVERSON, WA - Sheryl Kindle Fullner was thrilled when she was asked to write a book about building and maintaining libraries with cheap and resourceful methods, since she had spent a dozen years doing just that.
When school starts this fall, the Everson resident will be in her 13th year as a librarian and teacher at Nooksack Middle School. She used her experiences to write "The Shoestring Library," which was recently published by Linworth Publishing, Inc. The book is designed to help librarians administer libraries in tough times. School and college librarians and public librarians in small, underfunded libraries are its target.
Joanna McNally, who was named 2010 Ohio School Librarian of the Year while at Brush High School, has accepted a position as media specialist at Orange High School.
McNally was hired at a salary of $73,564 by the Orange Board of Education June 28.
The South Euclid-Lyndhurst school board accepted her resignation, retroactive to June 28, on July 21.
Equal Education (EE) calls on everyone to join our Fast for School Libraries from 6:00 pm on Thursday 29 July until 6:00 pm on Friday 30 July to show government that all children deserve a quality education which includes properly stocked libraries, managed by librarians.
Why is Equal Education fasting (not eating) for 24 hours?
As a result of EE's consistent campaigning a National Policy recognising the need for a library or library stocks in every school was published by government on 11 June 2010.
In addition, School Libraries Guidelines have been drafted, but these must be improved to give schools a clear instruction to establish libraries and must be accompanied by a budget allocation. It is crucial that post for school librarians are established.
Most importantly, Minimum Norms and Standards for School Infrastructure must be finalised for all schools. All these document will only be implemented when government has a budget, plan and timetable to ensure that all schools in South Africa have libraries with a librarian.
The campaign is working but there is a long way to go!
Libraries fading as school budget crisis deepens
Students who wished their school librarians a nice summer on the last day of school may be surprised this fall when they're no longer around to recommend a good book or help with homework. No one will know exactly how many jobs are lost until fall, but the American Association of School Administrators projects 19 percent of the nation's school districts will have fewer librarians next year, based on a survey this spring. Ten percent said they cut library staff for the 2009-2010 school year.
Last month, Google launched an encrypted version of its Web search, allowing users to enable a Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) connection to encrypt their information. Like several other Google products that feature SSL encryption, including email and Docs, Google touted this move as a step towards enhancing users' privacy and security.
But as the encrypted searches mean that data cannot be logged, filtered, or blocked, Google's new secure search runs afoul of CIPA, the Children's Internet Protection Act. And with the service's beta release, many schools are now facing some difficult decisions in how to respond.
CIPA requires schools to monitor, and in some cases block, certain websites. And while filtering is not necessarily a popular tactic (the American Library Association and the ACLU have sought to overturn the law), schools and libraries receiving federal E-rate funding must comply.
Rose Zertuche-Treviño, a librarian who devoted her career to helping improve the lives of children, died on April 30 in Houston, TX. She was 58 reports SLJ.
Treviño spent her last seven years as the youth services coordinator for the Houston Public Library, a system that serves one of the biggest Spanish-speaking populations in the country. She retired in October 2009 and moved back to San Antonio, where she was born and raised.
“How fitting that Rose died on April 30th, El día de los niños/El día de los libros (Children’s Day/ Book Day),” says her friend and colleague Oralia Garza de Cortes, a Latino children's literature consultant. “She loved her work and devoted her life to making sure all children had access to great literature and particularly to programs where children could enjoy and connect to the literature.”
The granddaughter of Mexican immigrants, Treviño grew up poor. Her father worked in a cotton field as a child and went on to hold two jobs to support his family, while his wife worked four jobs. Treviño’s first language was Spanish and only learned to speak English when she entered kindergarten. It was also that year that her mother first took her to a public library—and the five-year-old decided on her career path. “Not everyone figures out what they want to be at such a young age,” says her son Steven Treviño, 33. “And she got to do more than she thought she would ever do.”
It's becoming ever more critical day by day; today marks the beginning of Choose Privacy Week (School Library Journal).
“The point of Choose Privacy is to spark a nationwide dialogue of what privacy means to us, and what the privacy laws are today in the digital space,” says Angela Maycock, assistant director for ALA’s Office for Intellectual Freedom.
For children, protecting those rights is even more critical as young students often aren’t sophisticated enough to grasp what is appropriate behavior on the Web. School librarians can play a crucial role in helping to steer children towards tools they can use to protect themselves, say experts.
“Certainly we know young people are intuitively and naturally interested in social networking and other tools online,” says Maycock. “And so school librarians play a really important and critical part in this effort as they’re a starting gate in learning how to access information, and do it responsibly and safely.”
Yet how school librarians approach these lessons can vary, especially depending on a student’s age. A kindergartener may have a different understanding of cookies than a junior in high school and so teaching tools often need to start with very rudimentary examples and behavior models.