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July 31, 2015

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Lauren Barack

About Lauren Barack

School Library Journal contributing editor Lauren Barack writes about the connection between media and education, business, and technology. A recipient of the Loeb Award for online journalism, she can be found at www.laurenbarack.com.

Game Design-Based Lessons can Help Shrink the Digital Divide, Says Study

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Daily technology-based lessons, specifically those around game design that are taken for school credit, can help bridge the digital divide among students—particularly that between boys and girls, according to a new study.

NYC School Tech Summit: Green Screens, Digital Tools, and, Above All, Innovation

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During the jam-packed event on July 29, nearly 2,000 educators, principals, and superintendents from across New York City’s five boroughs were encouraged to rethink their teaching with new practices and digital tools this fall—and beyond.

New PTA President: Educating the Whole Child Includes School Libraries

Copyright 2014 Lifetouch National School Studios, Inc

National PTA president Laura Bay wants to create opportunities for learning throughout communities, whether in the school library, at home, or in the neighborhood.

CA College Says “No” to Trigger Warnings About Graphic Novels

The college reversed an earlier decision to add a warning to the description of an English course teaching “Persepolis” and three other graphic novels after a student objected to graphic language in the books.

Follett to Offer Classroom Library Sets to Educators

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School librarians and teachers can now access classroom library sets through a new partnership between Follett and the Classroom Library Company.

Updated: Hearing for LGBTQ-Themed Books Challenged 52 Times

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The Hood County (TX) Commissioners’ Court will host a hearing regarding “My Princess Boy” by Cheryl Kilodavis and “This Day in June” by Gayle Pitman, despite a Texas public library director’s decision to keep them in its collection following patron challenges.

Chicago High School Hosts Citywide Maker Faire, Coproduced by the School’s Library Director   

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Can you imagine having a Maker Faire at your school? That’s the case at Schurz High School in Chicago, where students are helping host the annual Chicago Northside Mini Maker Faire, which draws 2,000 attendees.

NEA Approves National School Library Study

The National Education Association (NEA) is set to launch a study to measure student access to school librarians and libraries. The project was approved by its Representative Assembly at the organization’s annual meeting that just ended in Orlando, FL.

LAUSD Lays Off 22 Library Aides While Green-lighting Pay Raises

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A total of 22 library aides have lost their jobs in the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) for the 2015–16 school year even as the district increased its budget by $850,000 from last year.

ALA Addresses its Challenged Book List After Questioning by FiveThirtyEight

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ALA explains the process behind the Frequently Challenged Books list, following a pointed story on the site FiveThirtyEight.

James Patterson and Scholastic Name First Winners of School Library Grants

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Patterson and the Scholastic Reading Club revealed the names of the first 127 schools to win Pledge to Libraries Grants, bestowed by the author and publisher. Patterson has also increased the pledge amount from $1.5 million to $1.75 million.

MyLibraryNYC Brings Public Library Services to City Schools, 500,000+ Students

A New York City school teacher and students, part of the MyLibraryNYC program

A unique partnership between New York’s Department of Education and the city’s three public library systems, MyLibraryNYC has made its way into 488 pre-K–12 schools across the city this past school year, serving more than half a million students and over 60,000 educators.

STEM-Themed Library Backpacks Encourage Outdoor Exploration

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Binoculars, star charts, fishing nets, and other items in backpacks for checkout encourage Massachusetts kids to get out and follow their curiosity.

Beaverton (OR) Green-Lights 15 New Teacher Librarian Positions

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Thanks to the determination of three Oregon parents and a school district superintendent, Beaverton schools will have approximately $1.5 million for 15 new library instructional technology teacher positions in 2015–2016.

Early “Sesame Street” Boosted Kids’ Learning—If They Had Good TV Reception

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A new study on the historic impact of the series also shows that watching “Sesame Street” may still be one of the most cost-effective ways to help kids, particularly those who start out economically disadvantaged, succeed later in school.

Digital Public Library of America Seeks Educator Advisors

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If you’re a humanities educator who works with students in grades 6 through college, the Digital Public Library of America (DPLA) wants to hear from you. With a $96,000 grant, DPLA is seeking applicants to join an Education Advisory Committee to create resources to support student research.

MakerBot Offers 3-D Printing Resources, Ebook for Educators

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Need help with 3-D printing? Enter the Makerbot Education Resource Center, which provides lesson plans, video tutorials, examples of best practices in the field, and more.

Kinney, Pilkey, Pastis, and Peirce Raise Money for LA School Libraries

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The four authors will meet fans and sign books at the Walt Disney Concert Hall this Saturday to raise funds for the organization Access Books.

Teacher Challenged for Reading “King & King” Resigns

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Omar Currie, a third-grade teacher in Efland, NC, who came under fire for reading the picture book “King & King”to his class in April, resigned from his position at Efland-Cheeks Elementary School last week.

Delaware Bill Would Ensure a Librarian in Every School

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A Delaware politician hopes to see school librarian positions mandatory in every school—and has filed a bill that would require it.