Press Release – “In recent weeks, there has been extensive media coverage, on the declining number of teacher-librarians in Canada, beginning with the announcement of eliminating school library staffing and making serious cuts to school library services and resources in the Windsor-Essex Catholic District School Board in Ontario. The Canadian Library Association (CLA) has been monitoring these developments, and is concerned about the status of teacher-librarians across the country.”
Ottawa Citizen – “The first thing Janice O’Neill did when she became librarian at St. Mark Catholic High School in Manotick was tear up the No Talking sign.
She also ripped up the No Eating sign, stopped charging students for printing stuff off the Internet and said goodbye to the card catalogue.
Now she’s clearing the tidy shelves of encyclopedias and other out-of-date reference books jammed with facts that are a click away thanks to Google.”
Press Register – “The federal government has opened an investigation into allegations that the Mobile County school system spends a disproportionate amount of money on libraries and other facilities in majority-white schools at the expense of predominantly black ones.
Mobile County schools Superintendent Roy Nichols said he is confident the federal officials will find that the system treats its schools the same. He said the system funds school libraries at the same per-student rate, and lets each librarian decide how to spend it. “
News Channel 9 – “Officials in a northern Alabama school system say they are looking into complaints that Bibles were distributed during school hours by an elementary school teacher and the school librarian. Superintendent Barry Carroll said he plans to investigate the allegations at Blue Springs Elementary School in Limestone County”
Houston Chronicle. – “The library shelves at Lamar High School are emptier these days. Principal James McSwain asked his librarian to dump thousands of books to make more room for students to lounge on couches, sip coffee and read electronic books on laptops. Picture the high-end coffee bars down the street in River Oaks. "We didn’t burn books," said McSwain, a former English teacher who admits feeling emotionally attached to the paper tomes. "All we’ve done is move a little further into the 21st century with technology in our library."”
NYTimes – “The shelves were stocked with books. The maple benches were grouped like shin-high honeycombs across the beeswax-colored floor. The Book Hive at P.S. 9 and M.S. 571’s joint facility on Underhill Avenue seemed to have everything. Everything, that is, except a librarian. After years of planning, The Book Hive opened on Nov. 12, only to promptly shut its doors. The library, which services two Prospect Heights schools sharing the same building, will remain inactive until the schools hire a librarian, a daunting task in the age of slashed budgets and shared services.”
Boston.com – “Governor’s candidate Charlie Baker has planned a press conference at 10:30 a.m. today at Legion Field in Bridgewater to voice his outrage over the grievance filed by Bridgewater-Raynham teachers’ union that attempts to stop the use of volunteers in the school district’s libraries. “Charlie Baker believes the unions, and especially the teachers’ unions, in Massachusetts, have too much control locally and on Beacon Hill,” said Baker’s spokeswoman Amy Goodrich. “This instance of misplaced priorities exemplifies that fact.”
Boston Globe – “The teachers’ union in Bridgewater and Raynham has filed a labor grievance that could block volunteers from keeping the school district’s libraries open. And as word of the work action spreads, it is stirring up outrage in the two towns. Librarian positions were cut from the middle schools in both towns this year and their salaries channeled into hiring teachers to address bulging class sizes. Volunteer organizations stepped in to pick up the slack — only to be surprised and disappointed by threats of a labor complaint.”
AP – “Students who wished their school librarians a nice summer on the last day of school may be surprised this fall when they’re no longer around to recommend a good book or help with homework. As the school budget crisis deepens, administrators across the nation have started to view school libraries as luxuries that can be axed rather than places where kids learn to love reading and do research.”
A roundup from Richard Hawkins.