Greetings, Board! We have received an 11th hour request for a letter of support from Queens Library for their IMLS grant proposal. We only received the request this morning and the letter is due on Monday, so we have limited time for discussion. Details are provided in the message below:
By way of introduction: I am a former Director of ALA’s Office for Diversity and had the chance to work with former ALSC ED’s Susan Roman and Malore Brown during my tenure.
I am now at Queens Library and we’ve just heard back from IMLS this week that our Queens Library’s proposed national summit to look at the future role of urban public libraries in providing Early Learning support for young children, their families and caregivers, was indeed timely. That was what we’d hoped to hear. The next hurdle of course is a finalized proposal that reflects this urgency.
If funded, we would likely try to convene before Midwinter 2015 in Chicago. I am thus requesting two letters of support from ALA: from ALSC because of the focus on young children; and from OLOS and OFD because a major area of focus will be reaching parents and adult caregivers who reflect the full range of cultural, linguistic, educational and income backgrounds. I’ve already reached out to Michelle Harrell Washington.
Please see more information below about this prospective event as well as a sample letter of support. We are asking that letters of support be customized by your agency and signed, scanned and emailed back to us by Monday, Feb 3 at latest. Please forgive the near deadline. The conversation with IMLS this week was the last push we needed.
If we are awarded the grant to support this convening we will certainly request your attendance and greeting.
Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have questions. I do hope this is an effort you would find worthwhile.
Tracie D. Hall
VP, Strategy and Organizational Development
Early Learning Conference: Summary:
There have been several studies done on the value of Early Learning services to children and their caregivers to support cognitive development; pre-literacy skills; and closing the educational gap at the earliest stage (pre-kindergarten and kindergarten). Pew Research, the Case Foundation and even IMLS have provided research on this over the years. Queens Library has incorporated this information into is three year Strategic Plan to include a comprehensive approach to early/family learning. There is a growing number of grant-funded demonstrations and acknowledged best practices in the area of early learning, including the realization that public libraries in urban and even, rural areas have a reach and access across communities that few other public service providers can duplicate.
Therefore, Queens Library proposes to convene a two-day National Forum for stakeholders in the field of Early Learning, do discuss the role that libraries can and should have in integrating early literacy with family literacy, and coordinating with local, statewide and national stakeholders.
Projected Convening Outcomes:
· Participants will receive tactical “Blueprints” that will serve as roadmaps on helping them build
o EL curricula that aligns with new general EL and common core expectations
o Working relationships with local school districts and education departments
o program and outreach models
o staffing and professional development to support the transition from informal to more formal EL program and service provision
o New approaches to space planning and design for Early Learning
o Impact and outcome measurements that demonstrate positive change and gains to current and potential funders, sponsors elected officials and other stakeholders
o An Advocacy and policy plan for supporting and sustaining EL efforts define the role of libraries in reducing education gap
Convening will cover: The topics above and specifically Family Literacy, STEM, Parents and Caregiver Outreach, Design, Connecting Informal and Formal learning, Transitioning from informal to formal learning programs, etc.
Mr. Thomas W. Galante
President and Chief Executive Officer
89-11 Merrick Boulevard
Jamaica, NY 11432
Dear Mr. Galante:
[NAME OF ORGANIZATION] is writing in full support of Queens Library’s application to the Institute for Museum and Library Services for a National Leadership-National Forum Grant to hold a symposium on Early Childhood Education in Urban Libraries.
Queens Library proposes to bring together urban libraries from across the country, along with experts in the field of early childhood development, social service agencies, museums, policy-makers and foundations, to develop roadmaps for incorporating the community-based services of local organizations; resources of city and state agencies and research around the evolving field of early learning.
[NAME OF AGENCY] fully recognizes the need for such a discussion and is pleased to support the Queens Library’s proposal.
NAME OF OFFICIAL
As you assess this request, please consider that we have also issued a letter of support for the Access Content and Evaluation grant proposal. I do not know what impact it will have to submit letters for two different proposals, (perhaps one of you has insight into the process that would be helpful).