Friday, June 10, 2011
Oprah Ends 25-Year Run with Spotlight on School Libraries
It's not about the carpets, the furniture or about the room. It's not about the books.
The real mission of the school library is teaching. The real "treasure" is the school teacher-librarian who effectively advocates for resources to teach children to become information and technologically literate. In the global information economy we need audiences to cheer and open their wallets for school budgets and funded libraries staffed by certified teacher-librarians.
Sure, reading is central to the mission. The books are important. But without a school librarian people are mistaking the crucial, instructional mission of the school library with that of a browsing bin.
It is time for school libraries and teacher-librarians to stop being identified with books on a shelf.
So, thanks for the shout-out, Oprah. Nobody has been a more effective advocate for reading than you. Next time I hope it will be a shout-out for the skills students need to organize and make sense of their quickly changing world and the curriculum instructors who teach these skills. School teacher-librarians.
Oprah's Book Club