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Sara Johns's picture

Revised School Library Resolution without strikethroughs

Resolution that School Libraries and Librarians are Critical to Educational Success


Whereas, school librarians help students acquire unique skills not taught in the classroom and information and technology skills essential for students in the 21st century; and


Whereas, there has been research conducted in 22 states and a Canadian Province that provides significant evidence indicating the value added to student’s academic development by the presence of a strong school library program led by a credentialed librarian;


Whereas, the most universal finding is that the presence of full-time, credentialed school librarians and appropriate support staff who implement a quality, school integrated program of library services is directly related to these student educational gains; and


Whereas, it has been shown that incremental increases in the following can result in incremental gains in student learning:


  • Increased hours of access for both individual student visits and group visits by classes
  • Larger collections of print and electronic resources with access at school and from home
  • Up-to-date technology with connectivity to databases and automated collections
  • Instruction implemented in collaboration with teachers that is integrated with classroom curriculum and allows students to learn and practice such 21st century skills as problem-solving, critical thinking and communication of ideas and information
  • Increased student usage of school library services
  • Higher total library expenditures
  • Leadership activities by the librarian in providing professional development for teachers, serving  on key committees, and meeting regularly with the principal; and


Whereas, quality school library programs provide academic instruction and support to those students who come from economically disadvantaged backgrounds in closing the achievement gap with the 21st century skills they need to succeed in college and career; and


Whereas, the de-professionalization and curtailment of school library instructional programs has not only had a negative impact on students and student achievement in K-12 learning environments,  but also a negative impact on the ability of youth to utilize the resources of public and academic libraries;  and


Whereas, more than 28,000 citizens signed a White House petition to ensure that every child in America has access to an effective school library program and asking that the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) provide dedicated funding to help support effective school library programs in order to ensure more students have access to the school librarians, resources and tools that constitute a 21st century learning environment; and


Whereas, in its response, the Obama administration acknowledged that “School libraries do much more than house books and store data: a school library can broaden the horizon of learning for students and link them with communities and experiences far beyond their own classroom and community”;


Whereas, members of the American Library Association, as librarians, educators and contributors to our communities, recognize that there is an interdependence among types of libraries within a community,  where what affects school libraries affects our profession as a whole, and that school libraries are at the center of this ecosystem; and members of ALA have an obligation to help ensure that every child in America  receives a strong foundation in literacy,  including the critical thinking skills necessary to thrive in a dynamic and competitive 21st century economy, now, therefore, be it


Resolved, that the American Library Association

  1. directs the ALA Presidential Task Force on School Libraries to lead the Association in its continued mission to address the urgent need for advocacy for school libraries, school librarians, and the impact of the de-professionalization and curtailment of school library instructional programs on students and student achievement, continuing to engage librarians of all types from across the association to advocate for school libraries, which are imperative to the survival and success of all libraries;
  2. encourages state associations and affiliates to influence legislation requiring adequate funding and appropriate staffing of school libraries in schools at all levels;
  3.  places a high priority on seeing that upcoming ESEA legislation recognizes and specifically supports the necessity for effective school library programs and credentialed school librarians;
  4. works to encourage federal lobbying efforts to include school libraries in legislation and regulations, including areas such as digital literacy and broadband; and,
  5. actively seeks partnerships with national organizations to reach mutual goals of sustaining school libraries.

Revised 6/24/12

Mover: Sara Kelly Johns, AASL: skjohns@gmail.com, 518.569.2339  

Seconder: Cynthia Czesak, Chapter Relations Committee: czesak@patersonpl.org, 201-317-1832






Ann Marie Pipkin's picture

This document also gives us wording that we can use for advocacy with our state and national political leaders and even in our own school districts and district leaders.

Ann Marie Pipkin Library Media Specialist (retired) from 32 years of teaching

2017    RMRT Chair

2016    Alabama Library Eminent Librarian Award Recipient



Elizabeth Hester's picture

Great point, Ann Marie! You should lead a workshop on this!

Elizabeth Hester, NBCT, Irondale Middle School; President, Alabama School Library Association

Elizabeth Hester, School Librarian, Irondale Middle School

National Board Certified Teacher

President, Alabama School Library Association

Carl Bansbach's picture

Looks good Sara! Great advocacy piece for us.

Pauline Herr's picture

This really puts what we need to say in an succinct product. Well done.t

Pauline Herr, Retired School Librarian 
14 Thornhill Drive
Linda Roberts's picture

Thanks so much for working on this--it's great!

Deborah Svec's picture

Florida thanks you Sara. Great job! We will make this a center focus at Conference this fall in our AASL session.

Deborah Parrott's picture

Thanks so much for working on this for us and our students! It is very comprehensive. Great job.

Deborah Parrott, M.A.Ed., M.L.S.
Assistant Professor
Department of Curriculum and Instruction
Program Coordinator
School Library Media
East Tennessee State University
Box 70684
416 Warf-Pickel Hall
Johnson City, Tennessee 37614
423-439-7602 office
256-436-4026 cell

"When you read a book as a child, it becomes a part of your identity in a way that no other reading in your whole life does."
--Nora Ephron (You've Got Mail)

Deborah Parrott

Irene Kwidzinski's picture

Thank you from CT!!!

Sent from my iPad

Eileen Kern's picture

Thank you for your fantastic job from all the school librarians in PA!

Hilda Weisburg's picture

NJ also shares in giving kudos and thanks

Rosan Cable's picture

Thank you for supporting our school libraries and our students' learning.