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Copyright-An information highway
Night light by Jeongho Seo is licensed under Creative Commons CCO 

That moment when you discover what you should have been doing happened when I went to the Smartcopying website. At some point I had been told that I shouldn’t be copying more than 10% of a work, so that I didn’t breach copyright. However, what if I am to put that same content on a wiki or a blog? It turns out that the site needs to be then password protected with access restricted to teachers and students-while I haven’t done this, I can see how easily copyright infringement could occur. The medium that we use to communicate alters the ways that we are permitted to use the original information, it is easy to see once you know, but unfortunately it just isn’t something we think about regularly.

Where, this site is particularly helpful is with links to content that is copyright free through creative commons licenses, this is of particular use for students making short films requiring soundtracks. I am so impressed by the fact sheets and can’t believe that I have not come across this information before. I am already thinking about doing a presentation at a staff meeting because I am pretty sure that most of my colleagues don’t know that this website exists and/or the ways it could assist in the creation of resources for themselves and students.


Smartcopying, The Official Guide to Copyright Issues for Australian Schools and TAFE. Retrieved from 


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Outputs and budgeting- it takes a community

On reading about ways of budgeting in a library, I became yet again aware of how little I know and so at this stage without experience, my opinions are very loosely held.

Evaluating and assessing the effective collections as a means of resourcing the library seems a sensible approach with an identification of the resources allocated into the varied text types and sources. However, working out the sums required left me feeling overwhelmed as I know that my current school library has a budget half of what is suggested as a means of maintaining an effective collection. Also, direction is needed for what purpose, needs, and with what paradigms do we develop an effective collection?

The output method based on use of resources appears to have some benefits but, would depend upon how well the library collection addresses the needs of all stakeholders. Within a Secondary school it would be easier to service the needs of humanities departments than mathematics and so to continue to cater for the ones already successfully utilising the collecting would continue to build imbalance and inequity within a system.

By selecting the core mission of the library and therefore the budget as a means of meeting learning needs it is essential that librarians know their learners and also collaborate with their professional colleagues to ensure that budget expenditure maximises learning opportunities within the library.

From someone who clearly knows much more than I do, I like the following rationalisation as it recognises the importance of a budget as an intentional measure in meeting the needs of a learning community.

‘Collections are often found to be at less than optimal standards, and so, need funding to achieve four purposes:

• to replace materials which are worn, outdated or unsuitable

• to build areas of the collection which cannot sufficiently support user demand

• to develop new collection areas and services to meet anticipated user demand, and

• to build the collection generally, so that it reflects state or provincial standards,’ (Debowski, 2001, p.303)

This for me is a starting point, a reference model for what I want a library to look like, to do, and who I want to involve, it is the enactment of the collaboration, the stewardship, and the thinking required as outlined in my previous post. It isn’t just outputs or inputs, but a mixture depending on the particular needs of the community.


Debowski, S. (2001). Collection program funding management. In K. Dillon, J. Henri & J.McGregor (Eds.). Providing more with less: collection management for school libraries (2nd ed.) (pp. 299-326). Wagga Wagga, NSW : Centre for Information Studies, Charles Sturt University. (e-reserve)

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Budgeting- unexpected surprises of the pleasant kind

Accounting doesn’t tend to fill me with excitement, however, when viewed through a paradigm of collaboration , stewardship, and thinking, then it all starts to become an environment of possibilities.

The lack of funding within the public school sector is of no surprise to anyone that works within the sector, so the importance of prioritising funds is essential if we are to provide the service for students and staff.  It is also clear that this planning requires evaluation and connection to school goals, significantly, this presents an opportunity to collaborate and advocate for the library environment. A Library budget becomes a proactive document rather than a reactive one, if it is as Doug Johnson states, ‘a written, goal oriented specific proposed budget,’ that articulates the vision of the library. Additionally, proposals for library expenditure should be ‘supported by research and sound reasoning,’ (MMM).

The development or inclusion of an advisory group or committee further ensures that the library has a team working for the befit of the students and staff in the ways that the Library can be most effective. This is where the librarian becomes the steward, the professional with the most knowledge and understanding of the needs of the learners that the library services that consults with and seeks input from a variety of shareholders. It is essential that the librarian report to the wider school community about the intentions and success of library programs creating a sense of belonging and ownership within the learning community.

Finally it is in the role of thinker that the librarian is able to assess and evaluate the needs of the library so that they can make appropriate decisions based upon most affordable and relevant resources. The documents titled Budgeting for Mean, Lean times provide a model for thinking about budgeting even during the times of abundance, can’t imagine that ever happening though.



Lamb, A. & Johnson, H.L. (2012). Program administration: Budget managementThe School Library Media Specialist. Retrieved from

Plemmons, A. (2010). Student Voice, Student Choice: Students as part of the budgeting process. The Georgia Library Media Association. Retrieved from