[library-media] Revised statement on the role of the school library program

Juan Lee jtlee at utah.gov
Wed Feb 15 17:24:21 MST 2012

AASL has released an updated position statement on the role of the
school library program. Approved by the AASL board at the 2012 ALA
Midwinter Meeting in Dallas, the statement can be viewed below and on
the AASL website
LINK: http://www.ala.org/aasl/aaslissues/positionstatements/roleslp 
Position Statement on the Role of the School Library Program
Learning for life…whether the focus is on readiness for the next grade,
college and career readiness, the school library program plays a crucial
role in preparing students for informed living in the 21st century.
Today’s information universe affords opportunities for around-the-clock
access to information in diverse and often unjuried venues. Citizens of
this information world must have the skills and dispositions to access
information efficiently and to assess critically the sources they rely
upon for decision-making, problem solving, and generation of new
The school library program provides learning opportunities in multiple
literacies that enable students to become efficient and effective in the
pursuit of information. Further, the school library program encourages a
critical stance as it encourages students to examine the authority of
authors and the bias of sponsors; to assess the importance of currency
of information to the topic at hand; and to determine the scope and
relevance of information to meet their needs. This instruction occurs
best in the context of the school curriculum where students have a need
to know and are guided by a standard of excellence set by their
classroom teachers in collaboration with the school librarian.
Beyond its curricular role, the school library program gives each
individual member of the learning community a venue for exploring
questions that arise out of individual curiosity and personal interest. 
As part of the school library program, the school librarian provides
leadership in the use of information technologies and instruction for
both students and staff in how to use them constructively, ethically,
and safely. The school librarian offers expertise in accessing and
evaluating information, using information technologies, and collections
of quality physical and virtual resources. In addition, the school
librarian possesses dispositions that encourage broad and deep
exploration of ideas as well as responsible use of information
technologies. These attributes add value to the school community.
The school library program is based on long-range goals developed
through strategic planning and reflecting the mission of the school. 
The school librarian participates fully in all aspects of the school’s
instructional program including federally mandated programs and reform
efforts.  The school library program provides flexible and equitable
access to all, physically as well as virtually.  The collection includes
materials to meet the needs of all learners, representing various points
of view on current and historical issues, as well as a wide variety of
interest areas.  Policies, procedures and guidelines are developed to
maintain the school library program.  Library staffing and budget are
sufficient to support the school’s instructional program and meet the
needs of the school library program goals.   
The school library represents for students one of our most cherished
freedoms--the freedom to speak our minds and hear what others have to
say. Students in America have the right to choose what they will read,
view, or hear and are expected to develop the ability to think clearly,
critically, and creatively about their choices; rather than allowing
others to do this for them.
Revised 01/21/2012

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