Tag Archives: SLA

Every Child deserves a Great School Library

The School Library Association and CILIP’s School Libraries Group have launched a three-year school library campaign.

Supported by CILIP, the campaign will focus on the importance of school libraries and librarians and the benefits they bring to children, staff and schools. Aside from raising the profile of school libraries, the campaign will have three specific objectives:

*The recognition of School Libraries/Librarians in Ofsted Inspection Framework.
*The creation of a School Library Strategy for England.
*Specific investment into School Library development.

The campaign will look to Scotland and its success in creating a National Strategy for School Libraries. The Government-backed initiative will be implemented in Scotland this August as schools in the country return from the summer break.

The Great School Libraries campaign will build on lessons learned from Scotland helping to unite stakeholders in a common goal of improving school library provision across all four nations in the UK. The campaign will look to engage with school librarians, supporters and school library champions and other allies to help push the message that: “Every child deserves a Great School Library.”

The aim is to create strong evidence-based advocacy messages tailored to various stakeholders including politicians, the Department for Education, Ofsted, schools – including teachers, parents, leadership teams and governors. There will also be media and public focussed awareness campaigns, helping to build an understanding of the importance of school libraries in supporting the curriculum and achievements amongst pupils.

CILIP Chief Executive Nick Poole said: ““This is a truly important campaign and one that has the potential to transform lives. Great school librarians not only support students, but also teachers – helping to raise standards and results across the board. They inspire people, improve literacy through a love of reading, and help teach lifelong skills like information and digital literacy. Teachers can call on them to help find information and resources when they are planning lessons.

“Through this campaign we will provide evidence that clearly shows the value of school libraries – not just to pupils, but also for teachers, schools and wider society. That is why we are saying Every Child deserves a Great School Library.”

Alison Tarrant, Managing Director of the SLA, said: “This campaign is an opportunity to celebrate and discuss school libraries and librarians, and to promote understanding and engagement with the profession. We will be working tirelessly to achieve the aims set out.”

Caroline Roche, Chair of CILIP’s SLG, warned that school libraries were being undervalued and often faced cuts as head teachers felt increasing budget pressures, saying that the campaign is a “chance for school librarians to stand up and show the value of a good school library, professionally run by a school librarian.”

She added: “ We believe that the impact that a school library has in a school, not only on literacy and reading for pleasure, but also on mental and emotional health, providing a safe haven for vulnerable children, a place for study, a place where students can find books to enlarge their world view or to find they are not alone, is inestimable.  Such value cannot be measured in terms of money or figures – a good school library, professionally run, is the gift a school can give to every one of their children, for very little cost.”

Sign up to keep informed about the campaign and find out how you can get involved at https://bit.ly/2kvAXp4.



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Autumn rushes in…

It’s lovely looking out of my windows here as the weather goes from summer to autumn.  Leaves are all shades of gold and red – and some green too!  The garden looks full and slightly overblown – but the flashes of colour from the late roses are glorious.  This will soon all change as we get to the austerity of the winter – but with a new fence (long overdue) to come things will change and will inevitably give us the chance to change and replant some of the beds.

Seem to have been busy almost non stop since the term started again….  So here’s a few highlights, in no particular order!

DTs Cast for finale

DTs Cast for finale

The DTs staged a revue called ‘DT’s go Over The Top’ as a commemoration to WWI & WWII – a real mix of humour, pathos and reflection which went down well.  A singalong at the end proved fun too.

Then we had two celebrations of Awards at work.  The Information Book Award for 2014 proved popular and seems to be building a following and widening influence as we grow year on year. There was a super celebration of winners at the Bath Children’s Literature Festival.  Looking forward to next year now.

Then we quickly followed that with the School Libraries Celebration Day – for the SLA Inspiration Award and the SLA School Librarian of the Year Award.  Both were remarkably successful despite the awful traffic and train hold ups which meant that the staff, prizes and badges did not arrive until nearly lunch time!

Chris Riddell's illustration

Chris Riddell’s illustration

Our wonderful speaker Chris Riddell saved the day by creating ‘temporary certificates’ which I imagine may end up more prized than the official ones!  His speech on libraries and librarians he had known was fantastic – and fully illustrated with his signature drawings!

In between this we had a super party for my birthday – much belated, but a lovely buffet lunch we laid on at the pub, and had lots of our friends enjoying good food, good company and lots of nice wine in some lovely autumnal sunshine at the Cock Inn in Denford.  Now looking forward to a great theatre trip which they all clubbed together for to celebrate!  Lovely!

This week is an illustration of our busyness – but much of it is sheer joy!  Whilst working for most of the week we also had the fun of seeing ‘An Evening with Sir Roger Moore‘ at Royal and Derngate. Lovely to hear some of his reminiscences of his life and his films.  The following night I was with librarian friends, publishers and booksellers at the Ritz celebrating Jacqueline Wilson’s 100th book!  A delightful evening. Wednesday was time for revisiting our youth – a night at the Royal Albert Hall listening to the incomparable James Taylor with a fantastic band and that sound and voice that seems never to age and yet gets better and better.  A great mix of new and old songs.  And such a generous man – staying on stage throughout the interval talking to fans who could reach him and having innumerable photographs taken.  An unforgettable night.  Thursday was the the AGM of the Reelscape Community that is doing some fantastic work with young people and has had huge success in getting some substantial grants for the next phase of activity.  Small but very purposeful meeting.  Friday was Guilsborough enjoying the spoken word entertainment from the Babble of Naseby. A lovely selection of poems and extracts that had us laughing and reflective throughout the evening. Saturday was back to our youth again – enjoying Steeleye Span at Kettering Lighthouse, it was their 45th Anniversary tour!  Bought a Tshirt to celebrate.  They played lots of music from their Wintersmith album, inspired of course by Sir Terry Pratchett’s ‘Wintersmith’ novels – a favourite of mine.

Will is rounding off this week with a turn up and sing Faure Requiem at Peterborough Cathedral – I shall stay home and cook dinner, after ironing and generally doing some homely catching up.  May even time for some reading!  I don’t seem to do the number of eviews here that I used to but my Goodreads feed is usually fairly up to date so you can see the books I recommend (I rarely review books I have hated as personal choices can be so variable…)

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Belfast, weddings and hens

Well the summer has arrived at last – and with a few days off, so trying to catch up a little!

Plans are well underway for the wedding in September – in fact the banns were read for the first time last week! So,it’s the Hen do this weekend – a little early, but one of the bridesmaids (RAF personnel) is being posted so need to get these things in early.  Have sorted the disabled access for the various parents and grandparents (it is quite amazing what one can hire nowadays).  I just have the cars to sort.  All my friends tell me I’m getting off lightly as Becky the producer is doing most of it!  Invitations fantastic – look like bunting, and everything else is falling into place.

Our SLA weekend Course in Belfast worked well – and our few days afterwards exploring the coastline were lovely too – some great photos!

A week in Manchester and a conference and a series of meetings all went well – though I seem hardly to have been at home.

The path to the Giant’s Causeway


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