November 21, 2017

The Advocate's Toolbox

Public, School Libraries Crucial to Flint’s Recovery

Since the revelation that water in Flint, MI, is contaminated with toxic levels of lead, public and private institutions, individuals, and civic organizations have been stepping up to help across the country. In addition to the infrastructure changes that now need to be made to the city’s water system, much of the immediate relief effort centers around information: on health hazards, residents’ legal rights, and what the city needs to do going forward. The Flint Public Library (FPL) has positioned itself as a source of reliable information, and the remaining libraries in Flint’s public high schools have been instrumental in helping local teenagers better understand what their city is going through.

OITP Hacks the Culture of Learning in the Library | ALA Annual 2015

While the American Library Association (ALA) Office for Information Technology Policy (OITP) is largely concerned with policy on the legislative level, an OITP-sponsored program at ALA’s 2015 annual conference, Hacking the Culture of Learning in the Library, focused on what libraries themselves need to know to function as outside-the-school-walls learning zones.

President Obama Announces New Library Initiatives

At a visit to Washington, DC’s Anacostia Neighborhood Library April 30, President Barack Obama announced two new initiatives that promise to rally America’s libraries, publishers, and nonprofit organizations to strengthen learning opportunities for all children, particularly in low-income communities. The plan, dubbed the ConnectED Library Challenge, will engage civic leaders, libraries, and schools to work together to ensure that all school students receive public library cards. Commitments from 30 library systems are already in place.

EasyBib Compares Two Years of Information Literacy Data

Students’ confidence radically mismatches librarians’ assessment of their skills, two reports from EasyBib conclude, particularly in website evaluation, paraphrasing, and direct quotation.

Ferguson Library Provides Calm Refuge for a Torn Community

On November 24 a grand jury in Ferguson, MO, delivered its verdict on the August 9 shooting death of Michael Brown, an unarmed black teenager, by a Ferguson police officer. The St. Louis County grand jury chose not to bring criminal charges against the officer, Darren Wilson; the decision, which was announced just after 8 p.m. CST, set off a night of protests and civil unrest, the most violent including arson, shattered windows, injuries, and, as of press time, a possible murder.

Pew Report Finds Millennials Are Readers, Library Users

Younger Americans and Public Libraries examines the ways Millennials—those born between 1985 and 1998—engage with libraries, and how they see libraries’ roles in their lives and communities

Literacy for Incarcerated Teens

Jails, detention centers, and prisons provide a unique opportunity to address young people’s literacy gaps, says one school librarian. Literacy for Incarcerated Teens creates, supports, and develops library services in NYC’s juvenile detention centers.

Ferguson Libraries Step Up to Serve Community in Turmoil

Libraries in the Ferguson, MO area provided educational services and creative programs for children and families while the start of school was postponed for two weeks because of unrest in the area.

Gale, Libraries Team To Offer High School Diplomas

Gale Cengage Learning is partnering with the country’s first accredited online school district, Smart Horizons Career Online Education (SHCOE), to offer a way for adults to earn a full high school diploma through libraries across the nation: Career Online High School (COHS).

Finding Bigfoot in the Stacks

Columbus State Community College’s Delaware, OH, Campus Learning Center starts its information literacy outreach early—really early. The library doesn’t just reach out to new students, or even prospective students. It’s starting with elementary school students, thanks to a campus-wide partnership between the college and the Delaware City School District.

Reed Adds Library Amendment to Immigration Bill

Sen. Jack Reed (D-RI) is offering a library amendment to the immigration bill that the Senate is considering this week. The amendment, #1223, would make public libraries eligible for funding for English language instruction and civics education, and would also add Susan Hildreth, the director of the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) to the Task Force on New Americans. The American Library Association (ALA) is asking its members to call their Senators in support of Reed’s amendment.

College Readiness: Librarians Can Help the Transition | On Common Core

Education buzzwords—whole language, multiple intelligences—come and go, but 45 states chose to adopt the Common Core Learning Standards. The questions educators now face are what types of instruction help students develop these skills? And how do librarians insert themselves into these critical discussions?