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Hello School Library Supporters,
The reauthorization of ESEA (the Elementary and Secondary Education Act) currently known as No Child Left Behind is finally being address in Congress. Language is being drafted by both the Senate HELP Committee and the House Education & Workforce Committee in Washington, DC. Although the major points of contention are over student testing and teacher evaluation, this is the time to try to impact our Congressmen to add provisions for school libraries.
Therefore, the next two months will be an opportune time for library and education advocates to contact lawmakers and advocate the American Library Assn/Assn of School Librarians position:
1. Maintain dedicated federal funding for school libraries;
2. Staff school libraries with state-licensed school librarians,
3. Provide professional development funds to be used for recruiting and training school librarians
Please contact Senator Bob Casey ( http://www.casey.senate.gov/contact ) who serves on the Senate HELP (Health, Education, Labor & Pensions) Committee. Ask him to ensure that the three bullet points above are included in the ESEA Reauthorization which is now being drafted.
Also, the House Education & Workforce Committee is working on a version of a reauthorization. If your US House Representative serves on this committee, please contact him/her asking them to add the three bullet points above to the ESEA Reauthorization which is now being drafted.
Senators Reed and Cochran introduce school library bill:
Last week, U.S. Senator Jack Reed (D-RI) joined Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Thad Cochran (R-MS) in introducing the SKILLS Act (S.312). Key improvements to the program include expanding professional development to include digital literacy, reading and writing instruction across all grade levels; focusing on coordination and shared planning time between teachers and librarians; and ensuring that books and materials are appropriate students with special learning needs, including English learners.