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Showing posts from February, 2018

My plan for educational reform

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I am a strong proponent of public education, but I'll be the first to say I don't like the track we are on. What I see is heavily prescribed learning with little choice for students. We can debate which schools have the better teachers and which schools have the best opportunities. But what we need desperately is for every single school to be place where children flourish.  We don't need a choice of school. This just opens up a whole different set of problems. We need consistency in all schools.

ALL schools need to offer

high quality reading materials
time to be curious
a variety topics to explore
meaningful techniques of expression
other learners, teachers, experts outside of their school wall
opportunities to fail
instruction in how to write personalized action plans
to hear viewpoints that are different from their own
a community with shared ideas and plans
time for thinking and reading and exploring
independence and some choice.

We don't need armed teachers. We need places wher…

2018 Librarian to Librarian Networking Summit

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Yesterday, I spent the day at East Carolina University at the Librarian to Librarian Networking Summit! This was the first one I've attended (thanks to Sedley Abercrombie). I've looked at it every year for the past six years thinking I should go, but just haven't made the commitment. Thanks to Alan Bailey and his team at ECU for putting on this great event!

Pros:

Quality sessions led by NC librarians.
Food - breakfast, lunch, and snacks (and it was all really good!)
Networking - this was actually easier than at larger conferences
Cost - $30 covered opening session with John Claude Bemis, three sessions, door prizes and more food than I could eat.
Location - we were all over Joyner Library. (I love being at my alma mater!)

Cons:

Location - don't laugh. It's a long haul on Friday afternoon from Winston Salem to Greenville. Although not as long because Sedley and I travelled together. Traffic is never as bad when you have someone to talk to.

So next year, be on the lookout for…

By any other name . . .

am I still a librarian?

Periodically, I see districts, schools, and other groups trying to come up with a new name that exactly portrays what we do. I get it. Librarians do EVERYTHING. We want a title (other than super hero) that clearly portrays our job to the world.

Most every profession has changed. Most every professional in most every field has had to take on new and different responsibilities, grow in their technological awareness, and move in directions that just a few years ago, they had no idea would exist. And yet, we still call teachers, principals, salesmen, doctors, lawyers, etc. by the titles they have gone by for years, and everyone understands that their jobs, roles, responsibilities have evolved.

AND here's what I think has happened in all this effort finding the perfect title in the school library world - no one knows what we do. This pursuit of constantly seeking just the right title has diminished our profession. While people are trying to figure out what to call …