Wednesday, November 10, 2010

TL as Instructional Leader

[Teacher-] librarians should assert their instructional leadership to guide administrators, teachers, and students in their schools to 21st-century learning in the digital environment.

-- Barbara Stripling
Director, Library Services, New York City
(in School Library Monthly/Vol. XXVI, No. 8/April 2010

Who is Barbara Stripling? Many of you will know hers as one of several names associated with student inquiry or research process models, names that include Kuhlthau, Eisenberg, and so on.

Here is a description of Barbara's role and goals in 2005 as she stepped into her place as the Director of New York's then-1200, now-1600, school libraries.
Be still, TLs, because in addition to closing out old schools and adding more with qualified TLs, recently 700 TLs from the 1600 school libraries in New York City received a "curriculum" of sorts, a copy of:
Benchmark Skills for Grades K-12 Assessments
Based on Stripling's 6-point model for inquiry-based reading and learning and linked to the AASL standards as well as to different benchmark years from ours, this 250-page document is full of teaching tools valuable for working with teachers in the library or in their classrooms. Our recent Points of Inquiry model for inquiry-based learning draws much of its design from Stripling's work.

Let's hope the processes in place for creating a vision for C21L can put ours as framed in Points of Inquiry in the picture; it is my understanding that the document has actually “reached the table.” Let's hope we can create such a document for young British Columbians emerging as a force for learning in the 21st Century.

The NYC School Libraries webpage has other really interesting documents, such as this one:
LMC21: Powering Up [School Libraries] for the 21st Century
Assessing Your Opportunities for Growth
Here you will find 21 attributes that characterize a 21st Century [school library resource centre]. How far do you/we have to go, and when can we start?

NOTICE: Committee III meeting of Trustees tonight at 5:30 pm, by the way. Find the 2009/10 TL Consultant’s Annual Report on the state of our school libraries, with staffing for 2010/11, online. En route to the Report, you may notice that this TL Special blog has “gone mainstream” – the story about Sir Ken Robinson currently running on the front page is a blog posting (hence its rather informal style as I am transliterate, you know). Rumour has it, it’s even been tweeted and re-tweeted! It is getting so 21C around here now.


PSSST: West Van's "heir apparent" to the Superintendency and leader in the movement to enter the 21C in education, Chris Kennedy, in a keynote address to assembled teacher- (and academic) librarians at a Fast Forward event a few years ago, said: "The world needs more librarians!" I checked: he did mean teacher-librarians, as well as public, academic, and special librarians. Such statements reflect the important realization amongst educators and others, How else will we find our way through what Jamie McKenzie calls "the poverty of abundance" in schools or life? Can we simply rely on skimming, or ploughing through, The Googled Results of lifelong learning?

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