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August 29, 2014

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Carolyn Sun

About Carolyn Sun

Carolyn Sun (csun@mediasourceinc.com) is a news editor at School Library Journal. Find her on Twitter @CarolynSSun.

UK Laureate Malorie Blackman will not Be Silenced

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When Malorie Blackman found herself at the center of a racial firestorm, following an interview in which she addressed the lack of diversity in children’s books, she found strength from fellow writers and in her convictions.

Ferguson Public Library Offers Lessons for Students in Limbo

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Missouri’s Ferguson Public Library has gone out of its way to be a refuge of peace and calm during the the tumult following the August 9 shooting of unarmed black teenager Michael Brown, and teachers—and retired teachers—offer lessons at the library during the ongoing district closure.

Following Shooting and Protests, Ferguson-Florissant School District Postpones First Day of School

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Following the ongoing community unrest and protests in Ferguson, Missouri after 18-year-old unarmed teenager Michael Brown was shot by a Ferguson policeman, the Ferguson-Florissant School District has changed its first day of school from August 14 to August 18.

Children’s Book About Gun-Toting Parents Gets A Public Beat Down by Stephen Colbert

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After HBO talk show host Bill Maher airs a segment about a book called My Parents Open Carry, about a 13-year-old girl and her gun-toting parents, the book becomes a popular subject of mockery—with former Egmont USA publisher Elizabeth Law weighing in on the conversation.

Palo Alto School to Be Recognized for Starting 13 Libraries in Africa

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Through the African Libraries Project, a nonprofit that partners U.S. donors with recipient schools in rural Africa, Jordan Middle School in Palo Alto, California has helped create 13 new libraries in Africa over the past eight years. This year, the school will be honored with the Compassion in Action Award in September.

U.S. DOE Awards $28.4 Million in Advanced Placement Grants to Low-Income Students

DOE

Today, the White House Department of Education announced that its Advanced Placement (AP) Test Fee Program will pay out $28.4 million in grants to help defray AP test-taking costs for low-income students.

Amazon Reveals Sticking Points with Hachette

Amazon

In a Kindle forum post dated July 29, Amazon reveals specific details of its sticking points with Hachette Publishing Group over profit-share and ebook pricing—and in doing so, doesn’t do Hachette any favors.

We Need Diverse Books Incorporates

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The now-ubiquitous #WeNeedDiverseBooks (WNDB) hashtag and campaign has filed for incorporation in Pennsylvania, according to a WNDB blog post dated July 29.

“Gay Penguin” Book Allowed to Remain in Singapore Libraries

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It’s been two zigzag weeks for the National Library Board in Singapore that has been the focus of international media furor since it announced two weeks ago that all copies of the children’s books containing gay themes were not only been banned from the state’s collections, but would be pulped. The international community pushed back, and in a surprising reversal, the National Library Board changed its mind.

FCC Approves E-Rate Plan to Inject $2 Billion into WiFi for Schools and Libraries

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On July 11, the FCC narrowly passed the “Order and Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking” for the Program to Modernize E-Rate which translates into $2 billion over the next two years towards WiFi funding in schools and libraries.

Authors John Green and James Patterson Stuck in Midst of Ongoing Battle of Amazon vs. Hachette

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Hachette authors James Patterson and JK Rowling, and John Green of Penguin/Random House, are just some of the authors embroiled in the ongoing public battle between Amazon and Hachette Book Group over the renegotiation of their contract on profit share. Amazon has been cited with using bullying tactics, Hachette books sales have suffered, and authors, like John Green, are speaking out.

JK Rowling Posts New Story About Harry Potter, Age 34, on ‘Pottermore’ Blog

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After JK Rowling published a new post about Harry Potter as a 34-year-old man visiting the World Quidditch Cup Final with his family in Patagonia on July 8, Daniel Radcliffe not only promised to read it, but said he would not likely be playing Harry Potter again. “We can’t be doing these characters when we’re 40. So there has to be a line drawn.”

The FCC To Vote on $2 Billion E-Rate Proposal, Librarians Are Speaking Out

Common Core Will Stress Already Inadequate E-rate Funding

On July 11, a big E-Rate vote for Wi-Fi funding for schools and libraries is coming up. The latest FCC proposal states that libraries’ Wi-Fi funding be determined by a space’s square footage—$1 per square foot. With $2 billion at stake, librarians across the country are objecting to this funding formula with claims that it doesn’t serve high-need urban libraries where square footage does not represent the number of visitors.

American Academy of Pediatrics Says Reading from Birth Can Close Learning Gap

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The American Academy of Pediatrics has announced a new policy that tells parents read to their children from birth in order to help close the achievement gap.

U.S. World Book Night Announces Its End

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After three years, U.S. World Book Night has announced it will be suspending its operations due to a lack of ongoing funding.

Win for New York Teachers Unions: New York Delays Common Core Weighing in on Teacher Evaluations

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On June 19, the New York State Assembly passed a bill that will allow teachers who have been low-ranked to have their evaluations recalculated without using Common Core test results for 2014-2015.

Coming Soon: Association of American Publisher’s Author Speed Dating Event | ALA 2014

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For those attending the upcoming American Library Association’s Annual Conference in Las Vegas this year (June 26 – July 1), the Association of American Publishers is holding a Children’s and Teen Author Speed Dating Event on June 28; RSVP to attend.

Evanced Solutions Offers Free Wandoo Reader Webinar for ALA Attendees

Wandoo

Listen up, ALA conference attendees, register for the free “Gamify Your Summer Reading Programs: How to Increase Participation and Completion with Wandoo Reader” webinar on June 18 at 1 p.m. ET.

Transmedia and Education: How Transmedia Is Changing the Way We Learn

Many Ways to Tell a Story: How Transmedia Is Transforming Education In and Out of Classrooms

SLJ explores how transmedia storytelling, or telling a story across media platforms, has cracked open possibilities for educators to teach and assess, as well as opportunities for students to learn.

This article was published in School Library Journal's June 2014 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

ALA Announces First Ever Winner of the Lemony Snicket Prize

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On June 9, the ALA announced the winner of the Lemony Snicket Prize for Noble Librarians Faced with Adversity—say that three times quickly—which will go to New Orleans Youth Outreach Librarian Laurence Copel who overcame unrelenting adversity to get the children of the Ninth Ward their much-needed books.