ETL 504 Module 6. Teacher Librarian as Leader

Teacher librarians are in a crucial role to effect change at their school and in their library. Change that addresses improved student learning and integrates digital learning is the future.

  1. Reflection and Forum Discussion:

What are your thoughts now on leadership and the teacher librarian? 

How does what you have been learning relate to your current role in the school?

How could you (if needed) put a different lens on your role through using some of the ideas in this module?

I can now see how a teacher librarian can have an effective leadership role in a school through advocacy from the principal but also from other staff members, not just teaching staff. There are so many areas for leadership skills to be demonstrated and utilised. This is something I have never considered before in the context of a primary or secondary school where librarians aren’t necessarily considered to be leaders in their field or role by the majority of staff and administrators. Collaboration in resourcing and planning the curriculum is a recognised skill, and there is a definite respect for the information skills, knowledge and expertise of the teacher librarian but never in some form of leadership role. Their potential is extraordinary, with professional development, mentoring, strategic planning of vision and mission statements, advice on information literacy policy and implementation, besides updating the principal and curriculum coordinators with information on the latest technology and digital learning trends. They also provide effective and transformational leadership within the school library to other information services staff, besides promoting the school library as an information ‘hub’ and coordinating school community exhibitions and events such as Book Week.

I can definitely see myself taking on these roles in the future, but sadly in reality, it all depends on the advocacy of the principal and school staff whether teacher librarians will get the opportunity to demonstrate these skills and qualities and receive the recognition and credibility their expert roles deserve within the whole school community.

2. Reflection and Forum Discussion:

What is the future of school libraries? What is your role as a leader in this community?

Consider what this means for you as a current and future leader of the profession.

What action needs to be taken by individuals, schools, professional associations and education systems?

School libraries are not about the space, they are about the connections between data information, knowledge, and how we as teacher librarians facilitate and construct the processes of learning for our students. Teacher librarians are in a crucial role to effect change at their school and in their library. Change that addresses improved student learning and integrates digital learning is the future. I feel that teacher librarians need to become more visable within their school communities, promoting and highlighting the valuable expertise and knowledge they provide as professional educators of information literacy and specialists in digital information technology. Schools need to be aware of how teacher librarians can effectively participate and lead change within our 21st century digital learning educational contexts, and provide opportunities for their inclusion in all areas of the school’s teaching and learning, curriculum, and professional development programs, besides utilising their information technology expertise and knowledge.

 

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