School Libraries

The Best of Times, The Worst of Times

Carrie passed along This NYTimes Story on Richmond, VA\'s decision to buy 23,000 new Apple iBook laptops. That\'ll be enough for every teacher and student in its middle and high schools.

Meanwhile in Montreal, the English Montreal School Board is considering reducing staffing hours at its elementary-school libraries. Yet more bad new from Canada, it never seems to stop. Full Story

The Seven Most Critical Challenges That Face SLMS\'s

Doug Johnson has written a great article Seven Most Critical Challenges That Face Our Profession.
He suggests seven areas where every library media specialist can and should take action.

They include, Remaining experts in helping others make meaning out of technology, Keeping our core values, Staying connected and more.

\"A person recently commented to me that one must be mad to go into school librarianship. He’s right, of course, on a number of levels. You have to mad (passionate) for stories, computers, and especially work with kids.\"

3rd-grade class sees porn, not dinosaurs

UW-Milwaukee Student writes \"This happens in a public school and people are worried about pornography on the internet at the library?

jsonline.com Story On a 3rd-grade class who thought they were watching a video about dinosaurs w an X-rated tape inadvertently left in the VCR by a janitor. \"

It\'s funny because it happened to someone else.

Library inventories don\'t stack up

Bob Cox sent along this from The Columbus Dispatch. A rather Sad Story on some empty libraries.

Last summer librarians in 132 Columbus schools weeded 225,000 old books.
The titles included \"Seven Fun Disco Outfits You Can Make?\", I can\'t believe they got rid of that one, disco will never die!

But anywhoo... Now the shelves sit empty until they get the money for new books, which they say is on the way.

\"To be honest with you, we have not had money for libraries since the 1980s,\'\' said Brenda Gonzalez, supervisor of instructional information services for Columbus schools.\"

School libraries cut hours as staff shelved

Collen Kelly sent in This One on big troubles at school libraries in Ontario. One-third of elementary school libraries in Ontario now report being open only part-time hours! They go so far as to say \"The cuts have also left teacher-librarians wondering if they\'re a dying breed.\"

``Unless the public is made aware of what we do, what the role of a teacher-librarian is and how desperately important it is to have teacher-librarians to work with other teachers, I\'m afraid we are going to become like dinosaurs and disappear.\'\'

The traditional school library obsolete?

There\'s a story
here, about school libraries in California that have been forced into the hall,
the auditorium, and other odd places.
They say due to booming enrollment and state-mandated class-size reduction,
there is just no room for the library any more. They go so far as to say
\"The traditional school library is obsolete in Simi Valley\"!
The article says \"Library-media center facilities at every one of the
district\'s 20 elementary campuses fail to meet the state recommendation of
2,250 square feet for every 650 students.\" This is in Simi Valley, CA.


Is this common else where? It\'s the first I\'ve heard of it.

The Educational dot Bomb

This is a nifty site I just ran across. From Now On The
Educational Technology Journal, has a Story
on how the net is changing education, and how
not to get sucked into the hype.

\"Before committing huge sums to new
enterprises, schools need to consider the likelihood of
winning a major return on the investment.
Those leading schools must protect them from
powerpointlessness, edutainment and
infotainment.\",

Librarians Not Required

I was floored after reading the first two paragraphs of this article from The Tennessean. Apparently, some schools, under law, don\'t have to have school librarians.
\"At the Dodson Branch Elementary School in Jackson County, pupils can surf the World Wide Web but can\'t go to a school librarian to check out a library book.

The school does not have a full-fledged library, nor a librarian, and it\'s not alone. In Tennessee, elementary schools with fewer than 400 students are not required to hire librarians or acquire as many books for students.\" -- Read More

The Impact of Computers on Schools

Donna Sent along this Story from Tech Source on The Impact of Computers on Schools. It talks about Donald Tapscot\'s \"Growing Up Digital: The Rise of the Net Generation\" and \"Failure to Connect: How Computers Affect Our Children’s Minds—for Better and Worse\" by Jane Healy. Two books that took 2 very different looks at the computer and it\'s affects on schools.

\"The thrill of using technology in the classroom is compelling. However, it must be tempered by concern for productive use and an awareness of the possible negative effects of computers on young learners. Keeping students’ physical well-being in mind, teachers must carefully arrange computers in the classroom (taking ergonomics into account) and set time limits for computer use. An informed, balanced approach to technology infusion is key, and Tapscott and Healy\'s books are a must-read for all willing to reengineer themselves for 21st-century education.\"

School Libraries Bustling

The American School Board Journal has a nice Story on the different ways school libraries are changing to better meet the needs of their students.

\"I used to spend so much time wandering from table to table, policing kids and telling them to hush or leave,\" says a middle-school librarian in Vermont. \"Now I sit down with the kids and talk with them about books they\'re reading or reports they\'re writing. It\'s made a world of difference — for them and for me.\"

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