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AASL Affiliate Assembly Meeting II Notes July 8, 2013

Posted by ledonovan in Check this out!.

June 30, 2013

There was a full agenda for the AASL Affiliate Assembly Meeting June 30, 2013 at the ALA Conference in Chicago. These items included the proposal for Regional Representative versus Regional Director Elect; reports from major committees; candidate speeches and voting for Affiliate Assembly Chair and Recording Secretary; reworking of concerns and commendations to take to AASL Board; and shout outs.

Proposal for Regional Representative:

The proposal for Regional representative came forward from Karen Egger. The rationale for changing from Regional Director Elect to Regional representative were as follows: to ease the expense of attending two national conferences as a representative would be elected along with an alternate so they can choose to attend one or both of the conferences; they will gain valuable insight and experience and could be considered candidates for regional director; provide strong communication link with affiliate assembly, and leadership skills will be mentored by a variety of AASL delegates. The Regional Representative may be elected to a second term, but cannot serve more than two terms. Webinars and conference calls will be done for the training. The duties of the Regional representative would include many of the duties of the Director-Elect. These include: has one vote at affiliate assembly, attend AASL Board meetings, when invited, added to regional and state list servs, contact and communicate with new AASL members, participate in the Mega-discussion with the Board at midwinter, submit regional reports to AAEC and Directors, work to prepare annual report, keep members updated, and subscribe to the appropriate electronic discussion forums.


Freedom to Read Council Report: (http://www.ftrf.org/)- the legal arm of AASL.  They recently handled a case in Utah where the book In My Mother’s House was banned; the ACLU filed suit on behalf of the school libraries. this never went to court and the book was placed back on school library shelves. They also offer seven banned book grants that are given to allow for more special banned book events. See website to apply for grants for next year. There was also a request to get AASL members to join: $35 for personal memberships and $50 for organizations to join. Freedom to Read Foundation is the only organization defending the First Amendment Rights for libraries and librarians.

Knowledge Quest– no report

President and President-Elect Reports discussed the Growing Young Minds IMLS grant. Julie Walker, Executive Director of AASL, is retiring. Susan and Gail presented Julie with a gift and AASL drafted a resolution for Julie as well. Gail discussed she needs members for AASL Committees.

AASL Executive Director’s Report– Julie Walker: Julie discussed AASL website parts with the most hits this year included learning standards, best websites for teaching and learning, and that the lesson plan database needs to grow. Julie also discussed her external liaisons with other outlets and we need to go further. For example Digital Learning Day- make sure to check this one out- ala.org/aaslparternships-collaboration. Another is ConnectED with President Obama. Need more school districts with schools and learning with technology effectively. We need to involve our school divisions with this. See website for infographic with the national Center for Literacy Education. They have some grant money for teachers and librarians to work together for professional development and to develop a cohort. Contact Kara Cavin about these opportunities at Kara.Cavin@gmail.com.

Candidates for Affiliate Assembly Chair included Karen Egars, Tom Stream, and Carrie Turner. Candidates for recording secretary included Davona Pendergrass and Juanita Jamison.  Carrie Turner and Juanita Jamison were elected by ballot vote at the meeting.

Concerns that are moving forward to AASL Board include:

Concern #3

Many school librarians are utilizing the Crosswalk of the Common Core Standards and the Standards for the 21st-Century Learner. Upon examination of the documents, concerns have been expressed about the inconsistency of standards across grade-levels. Lack of focus and identification of standards that librarians own, teach, and assess.

Action requested:

Review and update the Crosswalk of the Common Core Standards and the Standards for the 21st-Century Learner for consistency and vertical alignment. Expand the update to include the Grades 6-12 Literacy in History/Social Studies, Science and Technical Subjects document. Utilize exemplars from state affiliates’ crosswalks that focus on the standards that librarians own, teach and assess to assist in editing the original document. Publish revised Crosswalk.

Moved forward- results will be discussed at Midwinter.

Concern #4

STEM is a key educational initiative. Research is a vital component. School librarians are a driving-force in integrating inquiry-based learning and research. Currently AASL does not provide any position or resources related to national STEM initiatives. School librarians need to also be connected with existing STEM related groups.

Action Requested:

Create a task force to produce products such as position paper, toolkits, etc. Investigate partnerships associated with STEM initiatives.

Moved forward- results will be discussed at Midwinter.

Concern #5

School librarians would like to seek engagement of state agencies (e.g. state libraries and departments of education) in the problem of declining school library staffing and support and subsequent impact on student achievement.

Action Requested:

We are requesting that the School Library Implementation Task Force seek support of state library agencies. Recommendations for this are:

• Provide state library agencies with information about the decline of quality school library programs and the implications for student achievement

• Creation of a toolkit for state library agencies and other organizations that would assist in gathering and/or providing data (such as NASTEMP) on the status of school librarians and school library programs

• Provide advocacy tools for state school library associations to begin a dialogue with state agencies about these issues.

Moved forward- results will be discussed at Midwinter.

Concern #6

The AASL Standards for the 21st-Century Learner Lesson Plan Database is a useful tool in this time of changing curriculum; however, there are two areas that need improvement in order to make the database more effective.

First, the database needs to be expanded with additional lessons as there are only 112 lessons for all subjects and grade levels. This seems low given this a national database.

Second, there are several ways to search by grade level, subject, and of course, keyword. Librarians can use the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) code here (keyword). However, it would be useful to be able to search by the CCSS categories like “Reading Standards Lit in Science 9-10” or “CCSS Writing 9-10”. Although the AASL Crosswalk to the CCSS is available in each lesson plan, the database is not searchable by the CCSS.

As the percentage of submissions increase, AASL may invest in the search ability of the database.

This is important because:

1) The limited scope of the database can discourage school librarians from accessing and utilizing this resource.

2) During collaboration, teachers and school librarians need to be able to search for lessons by the general CCSS category.

Action Requested:

1) Facilitate more contributions of lessons plans to the AASL Standards for the 21st-Century Learner Lesson Plan Database.

2) Make the AASL Standards for the 21st-Century Learner Lesson Plan Database searchable by the Common Core State Standards.

Moved forward- results will be discussed at Midwinter.

Concern #8

Across the United States, there is an increasing inequality of resources both at home and at school. Add this to the increasingly transient nature in the lives of students, instruction, education, and skill retention is impacted.

Educational barriers that prevent homeless and transient children from having success at school need to be addressed. Seek partnerships such as the National Center for Homeless Education.

Action Requested:

We would like to see AASL offer programming, strategies or resources for school libraries serving homeless and transient student populations.

Moved forward- results will be discussed at Midwinter.

Commendations moved forward to AASL Board:

1. Common Ground 2013: Leading and Learning in the Digital Age (Maryland’s Premier Professional Development Event) -Maryland

2. Library: A Weinberg Project (Weinberg Foundation) -Maryland

3. Second and Seven Foundation “Tackle Illiteracy” -Ohio

4. Cleveland Plain Dealer “Tapping Into Parent Power” – Ohio

5. Gary Literacy Coalition – Indiana

6. Humanities Tennessee Student Reader Day Program – Tennessee

7. Librarian to Librarian Networking Summit – North Carolina

8. Tennessee First Lady’s Read20 Book Club – Tennessee

9. YALLFest: Raising local literacy through great YA authors (http://yallfest.org/) – South Carolina

10. BE A PRO – Digital Literacy for Families -California


Shout Outs:

1. MA has a bill on their General Assembly Floor like the Pennsylvania study. Susan Ballard helping as well.

2. NC received the ABC-Clio Leadership Grant –thanks to Iowa for inspiring them.

3. CT reworking library evaluations for school librarians.

4. NJ developed exemplars of librarians for library evaluations for each group and sent it to DOE and is posted on their website for all districts to see.

5. CO continues political advocacy- was able to keep grants to allow funding for school libraries. each school gets at least $3000 for collection development.

6. LA through the President’s Project and letter writing campaign keeps school librarians and school counselors in schools. Only a district superintendent can close a library and there is an appeal process but process is not appealing to make it happen.

7. AL- superintendent in Anchorage to dismiss all positions but classroom teachers; political campaign to fight this. Lots of librarians leaving and they can’t fill these positions, and now the school board in Anchorage sees the value of their school librarians.


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