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VSLA receives AASL Past-Presidents Planning Grant for National School Library Standards!

ALA News

CHICAGO – The Vermont School Library Association (VSLA) has been named one of four recipients of the 2020 American Association of School Librarians’ (AASL) Past-Presidents Planning Grant for National School Library Standards. The $2,500 grants, awarded in honor of AASL past presidents, are presented annually to AASL Chapters for the planning and execution of an event, initiative, or activity focused on the implementation of AASL's National School Library Standards for Learners, School Librarians, and School Libraries. VSLA is the recipient of the planning grant awarded in honor of Gail K. Dickinson and sponsored by Roger and Susan D. Ballard.

“VSLA plans to develop a comprehensive messaging platform to empower grassroots advocacy in support of school librarians and school libraries in every school,” said AASL President Mary Keeling. “Using a shared calendar and innovative exemplars and communication tools housed on a shared website, they will target their message to important stakeholder groups and maintain consistent messaging throughout the year. I am so impressed with the way Vermont school librarians are using authoring and publishing tools to develop these digital products. This detailed plan has great potential for replication in other state chapters.”

“Vermont librarians will develop their own resources using AASL’s Shared Foundations to understand local needs,” said Dorcas Hand, grant committee chair. “The committee loved that the Vermont process will begin by identifying resources that are relevant to Vermont stakeholders, including students, teachers, principals, superintendents, and parents as well as counselors. The comprehensive approach to build a resource for each Shared Foundation and each targeted stakeholder group is smart with long-term effects that will be much appreciated by other Vermont school librarians unable to participate as well as other states as the resources are released for broad implementation in and beyond Vermont.”

“AASL works with its chapters to activate leadership within the school library community and to influence educational policy and funding for school libraries at the local, state, and national levels,” said Keeling. “We are pleased to offer planning grants honoring past presidents to help state chapters address their state librarians’ particular professional learning needs. This year’s grants demonstrate how the National School Library Standards can inspire strong school libraries in any context and serve as a frame for powerful messaging. I am delighted with the variety of plans receiving awards. Many thanks to AASL’s past presidents who continue to lead through their generous sponsorship of these awards, and congratulations to the grant recipients!”

The AASL award winners will be honored during a virtual AASL Awards Ceremony during the fall of 2020. The virtual ceremony will replace the live ceremony traditionally presented during the ALA Annual Conference. Out of concern for the health and safety of all members of the community, the ALA Executive Board felt it was important to cancel the 2020 conference taking place in Chicago. Details for the virtual ceremony will be shared as they are finalized.

Vermont Librarians’ Statement on Information Literacy Across the Lifespan details the importance of information literacy to lifelong learning and responsible citizenship and discusses the role of librarians. This statement can be shared with your administrators and/or school board, or used in any other way that helps you promote the importance of strong school library programs and properly staffed school libraries. The cover letter template is editable so that you can tailor it for your intended audience.
Vermont Librarians Statement on Information literacy_rev1.pdf

ACT 46 Resources Compiled by Heidi Huestis and Martine Larocque Gulick:

Vermont Agency of Education -  Act 46: Unification to Achieve Sustainable Governance

Contains an overview of Act 46 as well as FAQs.

Vermont Agency of Ed. Cost Containment Per Pupil Threshold Amounts

Locate your school here.

Cutting Class: A Special VT Digger Investigation

Contains some demographic data tables that may be helpful to take a look at.

ALA Legislative Day 2015

AASL Advocacy Resources

Advocacy for School Libraries collected by Judy Kaplan
LiveBinder of resources for School Library Advocacy

Job Description

School Libraries Matter! by Terry Young (Scholastic Publishing, 2008.)

Outlines 14 state studies demonstrating the direct correlation between strong school library programs and high student achievement. 

School Libraries Count! 
AASL's “School Libraries Count!” survey collects national data on the state of school library media programs.

School Library Impact Studies by Keith Curry Lance

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