INF537 – Library Science vs school happenings

Pip Cleaves’ colloquium reminded me that to start small is valuable and worthwhile. Rebecca Vivian’s colloquium reinforced my view that we have a long way to go. Education is moving too slowly…and we are losing our kids to that which they are passionate about, and it is not school.

Selwyn quotes Diana Laurillard (2008, p.1), “education is on the brink of being transformed through learning technologies; however, it has been on that brink for some decades now” (p.66). This applies equally to education and to the role of libraries in schools and is reinforced by Wilson, Kennard, Willard and Boell’s (2010, p.16) paper on 50 years of LIS, that despite a steady academisation of LIS, the application in schools is in decline.

Conversations with my INF537 group, Jo Quinlan and Yvonne Barrett, highlight that we are all in different schools, in different places, of different sizes, and yet we are all experiencing  many of the same challenges. I have found it disheartening to be at a new school, several years later and still dealing with issues that were addressed at previous schools, years ago.

So, working on the principle of evolution rather than revolution, I have tweaked my case study to better understand how what we (TLs) do, is understood by our teachers. Many of our teachers have been very positive about the changes to the environment, the new databases and library management system and the more obvious, visual changes that are evident when you walk into the space. Unfortunately, we work with very few of the teachers, are often told about assessment tasks and asked to create Libguides at very short notice, and have negligible opportunity to collaborate with planning.

This task is an opportunity to understand why we find ourselves in this situation and figure out how to improve it. So many teachers are doing wonderful things, and we are eager to support them more effectively. Understanding where we are starting from and why we are here seems to be as good a place to start as any.

  1 comment for “INF537 – Library Science vs school happenings

  1. September 11, 2016 at 2:50 pm

    What a great idea for a case study Chantal. I really look forward to learning from your research into this myself. Ross Todd and Lyn Hay have been discussing the need for the role of the teacher-librarian to be clearly understood by the whole school community for some years now and I think this is an ongoing challenge faced by those of us in the field.

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