What is the role of advocacy in the school library? To whom should you apply advocacy efforts? Why? In investigating advocacy efforts, what do you see that you like? What challenges are facing school libraries?
One role of the school librarian is to keep the faculty and students up on the latest technologies that can be used in academics. The librarian needs to keep up his or her education and research on software and new internet applications. We can help teach students how to do research on the internet, in journals and books so that they can write really good research papers. We also can introduce students to classic literature and the best of new authors. We also have a job to help teachers to find resources for projects that align with the state standards.
Some parents may object to certain books or resources being available at the library. We need to promote Freedom of Expression and freedom to read a variety of materials. I liked one of the student’s ideas where they have a handout for parents objecting to a particular book where they have to explain why they object to the book.
The biggest challenge facing school libraries has to do with funding. It is hard to get all the books that would be nice to have. First, most school libraries are fairly small so you have to weed the old books that are used less to make room for the new books. Also, we need funding for new books and newer technologies. For example, the librarian at my daughter’s elementary school was writing a grant to be able to purchase the latest Caldecott and Newbury winners.
American Association of School Librarians.(2009). Empowering Learners: Guidelines for School Library Media Programs. Chapter 4.
Woolls, B. (2008).The School Library Media Manager. Libraries Unlimited. Chapters 12, 15.