Every School Library Matters

My kids go back to school today. Over the last four years they have watched me work on almost 50 public library campaigns. They were little when I started EveryLibrary.

My kids go back to school today. Over the last four years they have watched me work on almost 50 public library campaigns.

They were little when I started EveryLibrary. They are starting 6th and 2nd grades now, and are getting old enough to understand the vital work we do on library elections.

This year as they go back to school, I'm proud to share with them - and you - about the many ways that EveryLibrary is expanding our work to ensure a better future for students across the country by working to ensure that our kids have access to school libraries with well trained and professional school librarians, too.

In July, EveryLibrary received a capacity-building donation from Rosen Publishing to work with state school library organizations and associations on their ESSA Implementation Plans. As you may know, ESSA replaced No Child Left Behind as the primary federal education law. It includes fantastic and hard fought new authority for school library programs and school librarians in the federal law. But these federal changes need to be enacted in each state, too.

We have several petitions about school libraries running across the country.
Please consider signing one (or more) today.

The ESSA Implementation Planning process is a key step in each and every state to 'map' their education laws or regulations to the federal law. When ESSA Implementation is done right, the hard fought new authorization for school librarians and libraries will be in place. A state ESSA Plan that includes school library policies makes it much easier to get the funding they need at the building and district level. The advocacy won't end, but we'd like to see it go a little easier.

At EveryLibrary, we want to see every single state ESSA Plan include school librarians at the core of student life, and fund effective school library programs as the heart of each campus. Because of Rosen Publishing's donation, we are working right now with about 18 state school library organizations to provide technical assistance and lobby strategy to those organizations. The particular policy issues each of those stakeholder groups is trying to enact varies for each state. But the goal is the same: get school librarians ESSA authorization so they can be in the state appropriations later.

We need your help to sustain our work and change the landscape for school librarians. Our average personal donation is just $7 a month and we get a lot done for libraries and librarians with that kind of a donation. Can you help move us forward on this project by making a monthly donation of $5 or $10 now?

My older son once asked me why we're called EveryLibrary if we only work on a few at a time. I told him it is because "every library matters". He got that.


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  • John Chrastka
    published this page in News and Updates 2021-01-13 17:20:21 -0800