April 15, 2014

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Sue Townsend, Author of the ‘Original Bridget Jones’ Series, Passes Away at 68


Sue Townsend, author of the wildly popular British YA “Adrian Mole” book series, died April 10 in Leicester, England after a stroke. She was 68-years-old.

‘More Truth-y than Truthful’: Stephen Colbert Rips Into Common Core—and Melinda Gates Tweets Back


On April 8, Comedy Central’s Stephen Colbert ripped into the Common Core State Standards. Melinda Gates, one of Common Core’s biggest proponents, tweeted back her response.

New Digital Product: Capstone Unveils Database Module PebbleGo Next and Prelaunch Special


Capstone, a children’s books and digital products publisher, announced today—April 10—at the Texas Library Association that a new product, PebbleGo Next,™ its newest database module for grades 3-6, will debut this upcoming fall.

Fusenews: All you need is love (and books before the age of 3)

Fusenews: All you need is love (and books before the age of 3)

The latest roundup by Betsy Bird of A Fuse #8 Production.

Scholastic Presents Math@Work: ‘Top Chef’ Hosted Webcast Tying Classroom Math to Culinary Careers


Register now for Scholastic’s April 29 webcast of Math@Work in which The Chew’s Carla Hall and recent Top Chef winner Nicholas Elmi get together with three NYC high school students to create healthy dishes and discover the links between classroom math and the careers they aspire to.

No More Due Process for Kansas Teachers?


House Bill 2506 is a school finance bill that was narrowly passed by the Kansas state legislature late on April 6, allowing teachers to be terminated without due process. Whether Kansas Governor Brownback will sign the measure remains to be seen.

Queens Public Library Board Votes Not to Suspend the Library’s Director, Thomas Galante

” Following a five-hour meeting, much of it behind closed doors, the library’s board voted 9-9 not to force director Thomas Galante to take a leave of absence,” according to the New York Daily News.

Apply for a Grant for Banned Books Week Due April 30


The Judith F. Krug Memorial Fund is disbursing grants to organizations to assist them stage “Read-Outs” or other events for this year’s Banned Books Week (September 21 – 27).

Announcing SLJ’s 2014 School Librarian of the Year Award: Could It Be You?


School Library Journal and Scholastic Library Publishing join forces to announce the SLJ School Librarian of the Year Award.

ALA Responds to Rep. Paul Ryan’s Proposed Elimination of IMLS

Representative Paul Ryan (R-WI) has urged cutting federal support for the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS). In Ryan’s own state of Wisconsin, more than 65 percent of libraries report that they are the only free access point to Internet in their communities, stated American Library Asssociation president Barbara Stripling in her response to Ryan’s proposed budget, released April 1.

Mackin Educational Ups Its Game with an Additional 2,000 Ebooks


Mackin Educational Resources announces the inclusion of DK Publishing ebooks—adding 2,000 ebooks to its offerings.

Cengage Learning Exits Chapter 11, Completes Restructuring

Cengage Learning announced today that it has emerged from Chapter 11, having completed its financial restructuring.

SLJ’s Average Book Prices 2014


The numbers you put to work every year are here. See the list of average book prices for 2013 and 2014 to date, produced in partnership with Baker & Taylor.

For National Poetry Month: An Interactive Poetry App by Jack Prelutsky

The New Kid on the Block - main screen 400x300

April is National Poetry Month. This new storybook poetry app based on the 1984 book of poems by Jack Prelutsky The New Kid on the Block is a light-hearted interactive poetry app that includes songs for young readers.

New York Public Library Will Recommend Books Based on Patrons’ Searches

New York Public Library Adds Book Recommendations Powered by Bookish/Zola Books & BiblioCommons

The New York Public Library has partnered with New York startup Zola Books to offer a book recommendation tool in its online catalog to help library users discover new titles based on their reading preferences.

Google Admits to Data-Mining Student Email

In a sworn statement filed in federal court, Google has admitted to scanning student emails to serve students targeted advertisements. Although Google does not display ads in Apps for Education, Google “does scan [student] email” to “compile keywords for advertising” on Google sites, according to an EPIC blog post.

AASL Board Shakes Up Its Bylaws with Amendments Vote


AASL President Gail K. Dickinson urges the organization’s 7,000 members to vote to amend two bylaws geared to widen access to its members for participation and leadership roles. Voting starts March 19.

Link Du Jour: The Who, What, and Where of Buying Books

Link Du Jour: The Who, What, and Where of Buying Books

I ask you: what percentage of books are purchased at independent book stores? Today, we have our answer.

College Board Overhauls SAT Exams, Provides Support for Low-income Students


The College Board announced sweeping changes to the SAT test that will align the exam more closely with what students learn in the classroom and more accurately reflect their future performance in college.

CNN Sells Zite to Flipboard, Will Shutter Service in ‘Six Months or So’

CNN acquired news reader Zite in 2011 for a little less than $20 million and today sold the service to Flipboard for a rumored $60 million.