Library News Rodeo – March 7, 2019
National Entrepreneurship Week Wraps Up
EveryLibrary was proud to be the library coordinating partner for National Entrepreneurship Week, a congressionally chartered campaign to highlight and encourage startups, small businesses, and entrepreneurial ventures.
Through a partnership with Gale, a Cengage company, we help connect hundreds of libraries with the national "e-ship network" of other anchor institutions, non-profits, economic development agencies, and state and federal government. You can view the webinar "Libraries and Incubators" we presented Gale and the Kansas City Public Library on ways that libraries help create business success.
In the El Paso Independent School District, only 44% of students in grade 3-12 are reading at, or above, grade level. EPISD plans a realignment of librarians that would eliminate the second librarian at high schools and leave students on new, consolidated k-8 campuses without elementary librarians. Individual librarians on those newer, “better” campuses may serve as many as 1200 students.
We were extremely proud to support the Charlotte Library in Vermont as they went to the voters on Tuesday, March 5th, 2019. This campaign would support half the cost of the construction of an addition to the Charlotte Library so that the small library could expand and better serve its community. It passed by a 63% margin at 629 to 236.
Last week in Iowa, we helped the Iowa Association of School Librarians turn around a very bad bill, SSB1190, that would have declassified school librarians from "required" to "optional" in the state. It would have been a huge blow to the future of the profession and school library programs there. An Education sub-committee in the state Senate had approved the troubling language on Tuesday. In a matter of hours on Wednesday, we activated over 560 people across the state to contact their Senators. We are thrilled to report that it was defeated in committee.
News & Trends
SXSWEDU 2019 Policy Panels
The EveryLibrary leadership team presented two sessions at SXSWEDU, a major national education policy conference in Austin this past week. Executive director John Chrastka joined Dr. Kafi Kumasi, Allison Mackley, and Azi Jamalian for "Why is the Largest Classroom in the School Empty", an exploration of how state and local school administrators can establish equity and help turn around failing schools by investing in school librarians and effective library programs. Our Political Director Patrick "PC" Sweeney joined a national panel of experts including Kate Tkacik, John Bracken, and Felton Thomas for "Libraries Are Being Starved—Whose Fault Is It?", a deep-discussion about how to reinvigorate the funding triad for libraries. Speaking and networking at these kinds of conferences is a key part of our mission to build new support for libraries.
"Fighting the Cuts (2019)" - School Librarian Training
School libraries are being cut across the country again this year and school librarians need better support, training, and direct assistance to fight back against those cuts. EveryLibrary and our partners at the ISTE Librarians Network put on a "from advocacy to activism" webinar last week called "Fighting the Cuts". According to @MrsBoudreau on Twitter, her top learnings were how to "Find your allies before you need them"; that the "School library: largest classroom in the school. Do they know that?"; and ways to answer the questions "Why do you do this work? What happens to the kids if you don't?" You can view the archive anytime. Thanks always to series sponsor Follett Learning for helping us keep this a free webinar series.
Neat Stuff Libraries and Librarians Do
One elementary school has found a unique way to get more students going to the library. It put live chickens inside. Alice Boucher Elementary School's library is home to 11 baby chicks now. They hatched, and students had spent the previous 21 days checking on them as eggs in an incubator Principal Catherine Guillory brought to the school.
The Public Works Committee in Milwaukee has recommended legislation that would bring solar energy systems to three libraries: Central Library, Center Street Library, and Tippecanoe Library.
The resolution would authorize an agreement with Eagle Point Solar to build up to 210 kilowatts of solar systems for use at each of the three Milwaukee Public Library buildings.
What do libraries and laundromats have in common?
Like butter and potatoes, not much, but mashed together they’re brilliant.
Libraries Without Borders’ Wash and Learn Initiative does the mashing by bringing colorful spaces with story times, toys and books to laundromats, turning lengthy wait times into opportunities for early learning.