Last week, The Scholastic Administrator Web site posted an article authored by Kate Rix, a freelance writer from San Francisco, entitled “Are Librarians Still Important?” The article gives examples of school librarians serving in the instructional partner and proclaims that credentialed school librarians can be “another instructional leader in the building and a go-to resource for the principal.”
What I especially appreciate about this article is that it is targeted to school administrators, and it is not written by a school librarian! While Scholastic can hardly be considered an unbiased source, it does help our profession tremendously when non-librarians advocate for the instructional partner and leadership roles of state-certified school librarians.
I have had the opportunity to speak to several preservice school administrator classes at Texas Woman’s University. These graduate students have been overwhelmingly positive about information related to the potential of school librarians to impact student learning outcomes and to facilitate job-embedded professional development as they work with teachers in instructional partnerships. These principals-to-be immediately see the value of having a co-instructional leader to help them meet their academic goals for their schools.
In the Scholastic Administrator article, former AASL president Ann Martin and current library director in the Henrico County School District notes it is up to librarians to show classroom teacher colleagues what is possible when teachers and librarians team up for instruction. Likewise, we must show principals as well and document the positive impact on achievement that results from coteaching.
How do you show others that instructional partnerships are win-win-win propositions for students, educators, and administrators?