School Libraries can spark and ignite imagination and creativity

Chau Hoang Fossen
portland community college

Why are School Libraries Important?
School libraries are important because a they can offer a student who is struggling a place to find materials that can help them and for the student who is excelling a place were they can find materials that can help them. Libraries are not grade specific–they offer the range of materials to support all students at all levels, with all interests. They can spark and ignite imagination and creativity. They engage students in ways traditional classroom cannot.

How has a School Librarian or Library Impacted You?
I was a strong reader–so I was sent to the library to get materials to read beyond the textbook and class materials that my classmates where reading. This helped me learn and explore whatever I was interested in and provided me with a reason to not just sit in class bored.

How Does the Work of School Libraries Impact Your Work as a Library Professional or Person?
I’m a parent of a son who also is a great reader for his age. He is able to explore topics beyond what the classroom holds–which keeps him interested in school. I am also a librarian who encourages students everyday to explore and research. This is harder for some students and has sometimes lead to the conversation that they did not read much a younger person. Not having the basics of reading, research, and exploration impacts their abilities to be successful in their adult lives.

For the first time we are seeing strong language protecting School Libraries in national education policy. ESEA is up for a vote and this bill will be CRUCIAL to the future of school libraries, a section of the profession that has been under assault for decades. An Assault on One is an Assault on ALL. Stand up for School Libraries in America TODAY!

Find your Elected Official in the House

  1.       Contact your Representative to let them know how essential this bill is to our children’s education and futures.
  2.       Contact absolutely everyone you know and ask them to do the same thing.

Talking points

  •         Vote Yes on the Every Student Succeeds Act Conference Report.
  •         School libraries are critical to our children’s future and the Conference Report includes critical language to support effective school library programs.

This language is historic: For the first time in half a century Congress has underscored the importance of effective school library programs by expressly including them in multiple parts of this watershed reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. Join the movement to protect school libraries and call Congress today.