The ALA Task Force on Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion’s charge is to
develop a plan and strategic actions to build more equity, diversity and
inclusion among our members, the field of librarianship and our
The Task Force is currently in the information-gathering phase with the first survey that presents the definitions created by the task force and asks individuals to consider ALA’s current alignment
with those definitions. The survey can be accessed until Feb. 16, 2015 at https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/tfedi1web. ALA members and
nonmembers are encouraged to participate.
Additional series of short surveys will be conducted at times coinciding with the ALA Midwinter Meetings and Annual Conferences through 2016. The surveys are designed to help understand the culture of the association, the profession and our communities with respect to equity, diversity and inclusion.
The final, analyzed results of the survey will be reported by April 2015 via the Task Force's ALA Connect community and distributed through various ALA channels.
Short Takes for Trustees is a series of 10 short videos (8-10 minutes each) that can be shown during Trustee meetings to stimulate discussion about the important role that Trustees play in the governance of their libraries. Topics in the series explain the basics, such as what it means to be a Trustee (discussing the broad fiduciary responsibilities of governing boards as well as the limits of an advisory board), as well as how to set policy, how to evaluate the library director (and why you should!), along with board self evaluation, and the ethical and parliamentary standards for boards — both governing and advisory.
The courses are: What It Means to Be a Trustee; Board Meetings; Board Ethics; Library Advocacy; Library Policies; Strategic Planning; Working with Friends; Evaluating the Library Director; Board Self Evaluation, and Succession Planning and New Board Orientation. Learn more about the series, pricing, and how to register. United for Libraries members save an extra $10 through Feb. 28! Libraries in Nebraska, North Dakota, and Texas have access to Short Takes to Trustees through their statewide group membership.
How do school librarians transform learning? As library professionals, we all know that school librarians are indispensable to education. We know that schools with a strong school library program and a certified school librarian give their students the best chance to succeed. We also know that the education today’s children receive at the school library level will affect their ability to use and benefit from public and academic libraries throughout their lives.
We truly are an “ecosystem,” and we all need to support strong school libraries. That is why the American Association of School Librarians is launching an awareness-campaign during the ALA Midwinter Meeting this month: to educate the whole of our profession -- and through them, the public -- about the importance of school librarians in the lives of children.
How do school librarians transform learning? Here are just a few ways: • Schools with a strong school library program and a certified school librarian give their students the best chance to succeed. • Certified school librarians make the whole school more effective. They teach students how to learn, and they help teachers drive student success. • Students and teachers love, value, and use school libraries every day.
I am personally asking you to speak out about the value of school librarians in your communities. Everyone can be an advocate for school libraries! Visit the School Libraries Make a Difference web resource on www.ilovelibraries.org for specific ways to get involved, including drafting a letter to the editor or writing an op-ed for a local publication. Letters to the editor and op-eds are an easy way to reach large numbers of community members. If you have never written one of these letters, or need tips along the way, I Love Libraries provides a comprehensive guide to writing and placing an op-ed piece at www.ilovelibraries.org/how-write-and-place-op-ed-piece. We know that our children’s education and readiness for the workforce is in peril when school library budgets and school librarians are cut. You have a role in ensuring excellence for every student by demanding a school library with a certified school librarian in every school. Join us in speaking up for school libraries!
On December 9, 2014, the American Library Association’s Washington Office will launch a new and reinvigorated District Dispatch blog that will highlight federal legislation and policy news that impacts libraries. The new District Dispatch makes it easier for library advocates to find important information policy news, search articles, share news and “drill down” further into national policy issues. The new District Dispatch also includes a “Breaking News” feature that makes it easier for advocates to find the most current and critical policy information they need to take action at the national level. Finally, the new blog makes it easier for library staff to find free policy-related webinars.
As we head into a new Congress, ALA members are encouraged to subscribe to the District Dispatch to keep abreast of relevant library policy news, such as federal funding opportunities, copyright reform, open access legislation, Federal Communications Commission proceedings and much more. Visit the blog today: http://www.districtdispatch.org.
Written specifically with parents in mind, it focuses on the
importance of quality school libraries and certified school librarians for
student success at all education levels. Facts about student success,
lifelong learning and college and career readiness, as well as infographics,
and videos produced by state school library associations help to illustrate the
importance of quality school library programs. Tips for getting involved
range from visiting a school library to writing op-eds for local publications.