Tuesday, 17 July 2012

The Library - That's where I'll meet you!

ASLA - Standards of Professional Excellence for Teacher Librarians

Reading this document both puzzled and excited me! 

I have worked in many schools during my teaching career, in both the city and the country. 
After reading the Standards of Professional Excellence for Teacher Librarians document, I can honestly say that, in schools across the country, there are many types of Teacher-Librarian. 

In the extreme, there are Teacher-Librarians who are going above and beyond in their role as an information resource.  They actively advocate for the Teacher-Librarian to participate in the planning and programming of learning in their primary school.  They encourage the children to read, explore, research and grow through the acquisition of knowledge, skills and active participation.
There are also Teacher-Librarians who are just "checking out the books" and not promoting themselves as an active resource.  I wonder whether they don't have the knowledge, skills and confidence to be actively involved in the sharing of information and knowledge or whether they don't understand the importance of their role.  Perhaps the school hasn't encouraged the librarian to create and market the library as a learning hub.

I was excited by the responsiblities the Teacher-Librarian has in regard to learning, teaching and the curriculum.  I also began to understand why some Librarians are very protective of their domain!
The standards document was produced to "improve Teacher-Librarians professional practice and enhance student learning outcomes".  It will be interesting to find out how the meeting of these standards will be assessed and whether further professional development will be made available to Teacher-Librarians who are challenged on the information resourcing highway.

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