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July 7, 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.

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

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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.

Five Win Publishing Internships from We Need Diverse Books

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Five lucky college students are making their way to paid publishing internships this summer, courtesy of We Need Diverse Books.

ISTE Honors School Librarians as Tech Leaders

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Cathy Knutson, media specialist at Oak Hills Elementary School in Lakeville, MN, won the Librarians Network Primary Award, and Diana Rendina, media specialist at Stewart Middle Magnet School in Tampa, FL, taking the Librarians Network Secondary Award.

“King & King”—and Teacher Who Read It—Under Fire in North Carolina

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While King & King will be allowed in the school, it is not currently in the media center, says Omar Currie, a third-grade teacher in Efland, NC, who read the picture book to his class. Any book a teacher wishes to read to students or use in the classroom that is not in the school’s media center will need to be submitted to parents in advance, starting in the 2015-2016 school year, adds Curie, who says a personal grievance has been filed against him with the district.

Portland (OR) Public Schools to School Librarians: “We Want You!”

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With a $3.1M budget increase, the Portland, Oregon public school system is planning to hire more than 30 librarians for the fall.

“Divergent,” “Fancy Nancy” Among Popular HarperCollins Ebooks from MackinVIA

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A look at some of the HarperCollins ebooks that are the top hits with students and educators since the publisher brokered a partnership with MackinVIA more than a year ago.

James Patterson’s School Library Grants to Be Announced June 30

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School libraries across the country will enjoy a collective $500,000 gift when the first winners of James Patterson’s $1.5 Pledge to Libraries grants, in partnership with the Scholastic Reading Club, are announced on June 30.

LGBTQ and College Bound | College Ready

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These seniors have particular concerns about safety and acceptance. Here’s how librarians are supporting them.

This article was published in School Library Journal's June 2015 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Scooter Hayes, of “Dewey Decimal Rap” Fame, Launches CD with Student Rappers

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Hayes has packaged 17 tracks created by students in his library Rap Club on an album, Hot! Fresh! Delicious!, including songs about zombies, superheroes, and anything else kids want to rap about.