July 29, 2016

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Florida Lawmaker Suggests Students Be Allowed to Swap Foreign Language for Coding

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As emphasis on STEM grows, many legislatures want to push these classes in K-12 programs, as has been done in New Mexico and Kentucky, among other states.

Libraries Included in Lawmakers’ Summer Learning Proposals

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An emphasis on literacy and partnerships in pending legislation throughout the country likely means that libraries will play an increasing role in preventing summer learning loss.

Authors Pen Letter of Support to NC Youth

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A North Carolina law seen as LGBT discrimination has prompted roughly 270 members of the kid lit community to show their support for all young readers.

EveryLibrary Petition to Encourage Adherence to ESSA Provisions at Local Level

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A petition to urge implementation of ESSA provisions is gathering steam, while serving an important additional function.

2016 New York Library Advocacy Day Ramps Up

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On March 2, the state’s librarians (and their friends) can meet with legislative staff and make their collective voices heard in Albany.

A 92-Year-Old Activist to the Rescue in Michigan

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Doris Rucks rallied volunteers to reopen and run four school libraries in impoverished Muskegon Heights, MI.

ALA’s ESSA Report Reveals Advocacy Plan

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A new report out of ALA’s Washington, DC office clearly spells out post-ESSA goals for school library supporters.

A New Start: With School Libraries in ESSA, on to the Next Phase of Advocacy | Editorial

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The long-awaited rewrite of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act includes a major win, with school libraries now incorporated throughout federal law. Now we must map the road ahead to achieve effective real-world integration of libraries and librarians in our schools.

This article was published in School Library Journal's January 2016 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

President Obama Signs Every Student Succeeds Act into Law | Pictures of the Week

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“This is an early Christmas present,” president Obama said as he signed the new education bill into law this morning. “I love it when we’re signing bipartisan bills.” The bill saw strong support in the House and the Senate.

ESSA—and Federal Support of School Libraries—Signed Into Law

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In the new education bill, the definition of “specialized instructional support personnel” is updated to include “school librarians.” That language “lays the groundwork for new attitudes in state and district leadership” regarding school library services, says library advocate Dorcas Hand.

ESEA Rewrite Passes in House; Senate Vote Expected Monday

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If signed into law, the new education bill would be the first piece of federal legislation in over 50 years to provide school libraries with a dedicated revenue stream to enhance school library services and resources.

ESEA Language Is Final; ALA Urges Action

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With a vote expected Wednesday, December 2, the American Library Association is urging supporters to contact their Representatives to vote in support of the Every Student Succeeds Act. The final language of the bill specifically includes school libraries.

With ESEA Action Imminent, Advocates Maintain Pressure on Inclusion of School Libraries

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The ESEA bill will be finalized and voted on within the next few weeks. There’s no time to waste in taking action. Don’t let this crucial opportunity slip by!

Post-AASL, Inspired Brainstorming at a Lilead Project Think Tank

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Members of the Lilead Project—25 library district supervisors from across the country—gathered for a face-to-face meeting in Ohio. Topics discussed? Outcomes-based planning, effective marketing and leadership, and evaluating student success, to name a few.

How to Foster Teen Activism

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Kansas City (MO) public librarian Wick Thomas brought teenagers to meet the Governor face-to-face in his office to ask for more library funding. That’s just one way that Thomas encourages responsible activism and leadership among young adults.

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

How Three California Cities Fought to Save School Libraries

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This report on urban school districts in Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Vista, CA, illustrates the setbacks faced by each and the steps taken to restore or maintain school librarians after budget cuts following the 2008 recession.

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

U.S. Senate Passes Its Version of ESEA, Emphasizing School Libraries

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The U.S. Senate passed the Every Child Achieves Act on Thursday, July 16—requiring states to include at least one measure of student supports such as school librarians, school counselors and art and music classes in their accountability systems.

#getESEAright: ALA Joins Twitter Campaign for ESEA

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The American Library Association is joining a Twitter effort (#getESEAright) on April 9 from 7−8 p.m. ET to support dedicated funding for school libraries through the Elementary and Secondary Education Act and the Supporting Knowledge and Investing in Lifelong Skills Act.

Illinois Law Lets Schools Request Students’ Social Media Passwords

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This January, a law to target cyberbullying went into effect in Illinois allowing schools and colleges to request students’ social media passwords. The law raises serious questions about student privacy and school policies regarding students’ social media activity.

Step Up on ESEA: Act now to get school libraries built into this federal legislation | Editorial

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A decade of potential school library support hangs in the balance. Tell your U.S. senators and representatives how critical school libraries are in delivering quality education, helping schools and kids keep up with new technologies, and fueling engagement with learning as a lifelong necessity and pleasure.

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