PSLA Administrator Handout.pdf

School administrators are the pivotal decision makers in determining effectiveness of the school library program on student achievement. The administrators decide the level of funding for staff and resources, which are the key factors that impact the school library program.

Keep in mind that while the state legislature annually decides how much money each school district receives as their "Basic Education Subsidy," it is the superintendent and the school board who decide how those funds are allocated to departments within the school.

Recognizing this fact means that the school librarian must provide evidence that supports the district priorities in educating students. If it is test scores, the school librarian needs to analyze the school's scores and show how school library program impacts the scores. If it is improving graduation rates, the librarian needs to become active on those committees and develop strategies that include school library services. 

Get to know the priorities of your administrators! Work with them to develop and implement the school library mission and vision. Focus your advocacy actions on those priorities making sure the administrators know how the school library program is helping achieve success. Make yourself indispensable to your administrators! The students and school library program will benefit!

Tools to Gain Administrative Support

21st Century Job Description: School Librarian (K-12)

School librarians are the professional, certificated staff members charged with the instruction of students and daily operations of the library program at the school level.  They have the primary responsibility for the functions of the school library (i.e., evaluation and selection; ordering and processing; utilization of media; and the instructional role, which includes both formal and information instruction in library, media and technology information skills as well as assistance to students and staff in locating, evaluating and using library media materials and technologies).

Principals Know: School Librarians are the Heart of the School

This 5-minute video was crowd-sourced by Dr. Judi Moreillon and Dr. Teresa Starrett using funds provided by the Texas Library Association, Demco, and the Dean's Research Funds (College of Professional Education, Texas Woman's University).


Model Curriculum for PA School Library Programs
PA Model Curriculum for School Library Programs aligning with PA Core Standards.

2011 Guidelines for Pennsylvania School Library Programs
Published by PDE, Commonwealth Libraries.


Libraries in the Internet Age
Common Craft created this video to help the public understand how libraries have changed in the Internet Age.

School Library Story: When libraries thrive and when they crumble
A video by Joyce Valenza about impact of school library programs and school librarians on students

Model Curriculum For PA School Library Programs Standards Alignment (graphic)
A graphic showing how many PA Core Standards are included in The Model Curriculum for PA School Library Programs.

"The New School Library"
An article by Doug Johnson in Educational Leadership 10/2013

“Making the Principal Connection”
An article by Mark Ray in School Library Journal 1/31/2013 

“School Libraries: A Lesson in Student Success” [infographic]
Created by the New Jersey Association of School Librarians

”What Do TLs Teach?” [one-page infographic]
Created by Joyce Valenza

Strong School Libraries Build Strong Students Iinfographic) 


AASL Advocacy - Administrators
Link to brochure - Reproducible or order in packets of 25 from ALA Graphics

From the 2015 AASL Conference: "Your Principal Partnership: Communicating Library Program Success is Key to Your Success"

  • Learn what information can help your principal understand how you collaborate with teachers in planning, instructing, and assessing student learning.
  • Demonstrate the value of the library program by crafting reports that assess school and library objectives, forming the basis of your annual evaluation.
  • Critique information and determine what can be useful to your principal and why.
  • Presented by Dr. Mary Kay Biagini and Debra E. Kachel.

Resources and PowerPoint located at PA School Library Project website presentation page. (School Library Project website)

Article: "Collaborative Relationships with Principals"
By Judi Moreillon. School Library Monthly, Dec. 2014/Jan. 2015


Pre-Service Toolkit for Principals and Teachers pdf icon
The resources listed in the toolkit, developed by the AASL Educators of School Librarians Section (ESLS), can help to educate future principals and teachers about the significant role that quality library programs can play in student learning. The resources can also be shared with practicing principals and teachers, who would benefit from learning more about the impact that a quality school library program can have on their schools.


From Len Bryan's Communication for the Teacher-Librarian
"Each of us has a behavior style as a person and as a team member or supervisor that impacts how we communicate with others. Since no one person has all of the attributes of a perfect person or leader, it takes a TEAM made up of many different communication styles to get the best results.  All styles bring value to the organization." The survey is only 10 questions; quick and easy!

Communication Styles Inventory