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Celebrate and Act Now - HB1355

Celebrate and Act Now - HB1355

We now have SIXTY-TWO co-sponsors for HB 1355 - One Certified Librarian Per Public School. This is amazing work that many school librarians have done in talking with and meeting with PA Representatives all over the state. Thanks also to our Local and State Advocacy Committee and Deb Kachel/Co-Chair for the many phone calls, visits, and emails to get this far.  Let's celebrate this accomplishment - but continue to work for more co-sponsors and keep the momentum moving.

 

If your representative is listed below - Send them an email, make a phone call or schedule a visit to thank them personally. Remind them why this legislation is so important to the students in Pennsylvania.

If your representative isn't listed below - Send them an email, make a phone call or schedule a visit to ask them to become a co-sponsor on the bill. Remind them why this legislation is so important to the students in Pennsylvania.

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Behind the Scenes: Sharing Your Gifts

Behind the Scenes: Sharing Your Gifts

Dear PSLA Members-

As I write my first PSLA Pulse as president of the Pennsylvania School Librarians Association, I can’t help but reflect back to when I became a student member in 1992. As a nontraditional student at Millersville University and under the tutelage of Dr. Marge Tassia, becoming a PSLA membership was an easy choice for me. A few years later as a middle school librarian I recall reading a letter in Learning and Media (previously PSLA’s quarterly journal) by President Sally Myers. She expressed how important it was for all PSLA members to answer the call to volunteer in order to keep the school library profession and the association vibrant and healthy. I was inspired to join my first PSLA committee that year. 

Fast forward to July 2019. Eighty PSLA members spent a hot, summer July day in Hershey, PA answering the same call at the 2019 PSLA Summit. The excitement and energy in the room as we worked to strategize and plan for each of the PSLA committees for the upcoming year was and always is inspiring and fills me with pride for our association. The work that these Committee Co-chairs and members do during the Summit and throughout the year has a huge impact on what the association has to offer PSLA members and all school librarians in Pennsylvania. There is no way to describe this impact in this short space. From communications, professional development opportunities, local and state advocacy efforts, a quality annual conference, recognition of outstanding school librarians and stakeholders, quality literature reviews to the governance and operations of our association - it takes a large team of committed and passionate volunteers to keep PSLA moving forward. But what I want all PSLA members to know is that getting involved in our association committees, task groups and leadership opens your own eyes to the limitless ways we can all work to make our profession better.  Stepping up and volunteering in PSLA is rewarding for the association but also for all of us as individuals. Personal growth is always a benefit when we work together as a team. It also reinforces the theory that many hands make small work! I know that ALL librarians have special talents and gifts. Whatever they may be – I’m sure we can use them to impact PSLA, school librarians and Pennsylvania students.

Speaking of stepping up and volunteering... I’m honored to announce that Sandy Reilly, from Pleasant Valley High School, Pleasant Valley School District, will be the new PSLA treasurer for the remainder of the 2019-2020 term. The PSLA Board is very excited about Sandy‘s willingness to serve PSLA in this new capacity and share her expertise. Sandy has given her time and talent to PSLA in many ways since she has been a member through the conference committee, the LSTA leadership academies, conference presenter and through her local affiliate.

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Guidelines for Pennsylvania School Library Programs (2019)

Pennsylvania Department of Education
Office of Commonwealth Libraries
Glenn R. Miller, Deputy Secretary & Commissioner for Libraries

Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Guidelines for Pennsylvania School Library Programs

I am pleased to announce that the Governor’s Advisory Council on Library Development (GAC) reviewed and approved a new set of Guidelines for Pennsylvania School Library Programs (PDF) at its most recent meeting in Carlisle on May 30, 2019. 

Designed to complement the National School Library Standards for Learners, School Librarians, and School Libraries (American Association of School Librarians, 2018), the Guidelines for Pennsylvania School Library Programs (PDF) identifies and builds upon eight indicators for an effective school library program by providing goals, guidelines, and resources that will promote excellence in Pennsylvania school libraries and will result in highly positive learning outcomes. 

The guidelines are intended for use by school librarians, school administrators, classroom educators, families, community members, public library staff and board members, and university library science programs.


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PSLA Leadership

Have you ever considered running for a two-year PSLA Director position, for PSLA Treasurer, or even for an Officer position? The PSLA Leadership Development Task Group is responsible for creating a slate of nominees for the 2020-22 PSLA Board of Directors.


If you say “Yes,” as a prospective nominee, you would need to fill out a Leadership Development survey in order to be considered for a position as a candidate. The survey questions are meant to provide information about each candidate, so the membership can make an informed decision when voting. The newly established Leadership Development Task Group, made up of six (6) PSLA members from across the state, will review the prospective nominees before names can be considered for the official slate. This procedure is new for the 2020 PSLA election.  Once the slate of nominees is approved by the PSLA Board, the election will take place in the spring. Successful candidates will begin their terms on July 1, 2020.


Prospective nominees   must complete this survey to be considered a candidate. 


Link to Leadership Development Survey


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Behind the Scenes: Contentment and True Belonging

Behind the Scenes: Contentment and True Belonging

True BelongingAs I sit on my porch with my husband (and cats) and reflect upon the past year as the PSLA president, I am filled with emotions. The one I feel most is contentment. I am a goal-oriented and improvement-focused person, so contentment doesn't come easy for me. Right now, at this moment, I am content in my situation - with what I have and who I am. 

This year, I learned about true vulnerability and belonging by presenting my "authentic, imperfect self" to you

As much as I would love Brene Brown's quotation to be the center of my last "Behind the Scenes," one of Seth Godin's posts from a few weeks ago has been swirling around in my head.

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July: Spotlight Librarian

July Librarians' Spotlight: Matthew Good, Librarian, Donegal Junior High School

Congratulations Matthew, and thank you for all that you do for your students and community!

Would you like to be our next Spotlight Librarian? Nominate yourself or a colleague using this form.

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PSLA Awards Nominations Due June 30th!

Hello from the PSLA Awards Committee! We hope that your summer is off to a wonderful start, and wanted to remind you that nominations for two of PSLA’s awards are due June 30th! Are you or your colleagues part of an innovative or exceptional Pennsylvania school library? If so, please consider applying or nominating a colleague for one of our 2020 Awards!
 
Outstanding Pennsylvania School Library - Recognizing Outstanding school library programming, instruction, and services which are integral to students’ education. The award is open to individual schools and/or school districts of any kind or size! Applicants may self nominate. Nomination deadline: June 30th.
 
PA School Library Innovators - Recognizing Pennsylvania school librarians who demonstrate innovation in school librarianship in one of four target areas: Teaching & Learning, Celebrating Reading, Transformative Environment, or Digital Outreach. 
Find more information, including nomination materials and scoring rubrics, at https://www.psla.org/psla-awards. While you're there you can learn more about our Outstanding Author/Illustrator, Outstanding Administrator, and Distinguished Service awards too! Please contact committee co-chair Lauren Strohecker at [email protected] with any additional questions.
 
Thank you for helping us recognize the efforts of Pennsylvania school librarians!
 

Build a Collaboration Action Plan with the AASL National School Library Standards: Stage 2 Training

Build a Collaboration Action Plan with the AASL National School Library Standards: Stage 2 Training

Co-sponsored by the Pennsylvania School Librarians Association (PSLA) and the University of Pittsburgh School Library Certification Program

Build and strengthen your collaboration with teachers through aligning the American Association of School Librarians National School Library Standards with the PA Core Standards as well as with the ISTE Standards for Students. You’ll create an action plan for collaborating with teachers to promote information and digital literacy across the curriculum for all learners, both students and teachers. These aligned Standards provide a solid foundation for developing learner competencies in information fluency and have credibility with administrators and educators. Whatever your situation – one school or multiple schools, solo in your district, fresh from the classroom, or assuming new teaching responsibilities – you’ll take away an action plan to tackle how to collaborate effectively with teachers to help your learners.

Bring your most successful information literacy lesson plan and learn how to align it with these standards and transform the way you collaborate with your teachers. (This training incorporates Stage 1 training) Act 48 hours are available for participants.

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PSLA Pulse: Summer Reading

Hello!!
Please consider exploring these three links over your summer:
1) Need to read something great this summer?? Ready to start your book orders for next year? Want to see what PA librarians are writing about?! Please check out (and save the link!) to our Teaching & Learning Literature Review blog for titles, reviews, and lots of great ideas to get you reading and sharing!!
2) Have you shared your thoughts in our 2019 Professional Development Survey yet?? If not, we would love to have you take a few minutes and let us know what training you want and expertise you have for the coming year. Complete it by June 15th PLEASE!!
3) Throughout the school year we shared quite a few highlighted AASL Best Apps and Best Websites for 2018. The new list should be coming out soon, so take a few more minutes to explore and play with these great tech tools.
Thanks for reading and learning!
The PSLA Teaching & Learning Committee

PSLA Pulse: Outstanding PA School Library Award

Are you or your colleagues part of an innovative or exceptional Pennsylvania school library? Do you know of an outstanding school library in Pennsylvania? If so, please consider making a nomination or applying for PSLA's Outstanding Pennsylvania School Library Award!
This award recognizes outstanding school library programming, instruction, and services which are integral to students' education, and is open to individual schools and/or school districts of any kind or size! Applicants are welcome to self-nominate. Nomination deadline: June 30th.
To learn more about the requirements, process, and scoring rubric, please visit https://www.psla.org/psla-awards. The awards committee is happy to answer any questions you may have; please contact committee co-chairs Lauren Strohecker and Melissa Janes at [email protected].
Thank you for the important work you do for the Pennsylvania students, and for helping us recognize the efforts of Pennsylvania school librarians!

PSLA Pulse: Are you a PA School Library Innovator? Apply today!


*Are you proud of an innovative lesson, unit, program, or community outreach effort?*
*Are you working to celebrate reading in your school or district through the school library?*
*Have you transformed learning in your library by using your space in a new and innovative way?*
*Do you excel at using social media for family and community outreach, or to advance your own learning?*
If so, please consider applying for PA School Library Innovators! We are looking to recognize Pennsylvania school librarians who demonstrate innovation in school librarianship in one of four target areas: Teaching & Learning, Celebrating Reading, Transformative Environment, or Digital Outreach. The nomination process is short and simple, and the applicants are encouraged to self-nominate! Nomination deadline: June 30th
To learn more about the requirements, process, and scoring rubric, please visit https://www.psla.org/psla-awards. The awards committee is happy to answer any questions you may have; please contact committee co-chairs Lauren Strohecker and Melissa Janes at [email protected].
Thank you for the important work you do for the Pennsylvania students, and for helping us recognize the efforts of Pennsylvania school librarians!

PSLA Pulse: Awards

The PSLA Awards Committee is thrilled to announce that nominations for PSLA's 2020 Awards are now open! Are you or your colleagues part of an innovative or exceptional Pennsylvania school library? If so, please consider making a nomination or applying for one of PSLA's 2019 awards! We are currently seeking nominees for the following awards:

 

Outstanding Pennsylvania School Library - This award recognizes outstanding school library programming, instruction, and services which are integral to students' education, and is open to individual schools and/or school districts of any kind or size! Applicants may self nominate. Nomination deadline: June 30th.

 

PA School Library Innovators - Are you proud of an innovative lesson, program, campaign, or community outreach effort? Please consider applying for PA School Library Innovators! We are looking to recognize Pennsylvania school librarians who demonstrate innovation in school librarianship in one of four target areas: Teaching & Learning, Celebrating Reading, Transformative Environment, or Digital Outreach. Nomination deadline: June 30th.

 

Find more information about both of these awards, including nomination materials and scoring rubrics, at https://www.psla.org/psla-awards. While you're there you can learn more about our Outstanding Author/Illustrator, Outstanding Administrator, and Distinguished Service awards too! Please contact committee co-chairs Lauren Strohecker and Melissa Janes at [email protected] with any additional questions.

 

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PSLA Pulse: Librarians' Spotlight

Librarians' Spotlight

So much is happening in PA libraries, and we want to showcase what you are doing! Do you have special programming, an awesome makerspace, a fabulous and favorite lesson, a visiting author, a published article, etc? Please fill out the form below so that we can highlight YOU! You can also highlight other librarians.

https://forms.gle/mLEaqEu8y41qQrbB6

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Everyone is Welcome to Join the #PALibChat

Everyone is Welcome to Join the #PALibChat

If you are on Twitter, you may have seen the monthly #PALibChat Twitter Chats.  (Please note that #PALibChat is not formally sponsored by PSLA but is a great way for members and nonmembers to discuss issues.)

If you are not familiar with a Twitter Chat, a moderator asks a few questions about a predetermined topic and followers answer. As you answer, use the #PaLibChat hashtag, and feel free to connect with people who are also chatting. If you aren’t able to make the live chat, you can search the hashtag, read what others shared and add their thoughts.

This year, we’ve discussed the following:

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Microsoft selects Karey Killian as 1st #ChangeMaker

Congratulations to Karey Killian who was selected by Microsoft as the first educator to highlight in their “Changemaker” series!

They brought a video production team to her libraries for two days. Please take a little time to watch the video which highlights what happened to her libraries after she found out that thousands of books were thrown out due to the mold. You’ll love the student responses, smiles, and laughs in this video. Karey thinks it’s important that we take time to highlight the great things happening in our libraries.

 

If you have the opportunity, please share this with your social networks!

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PSLA Pulse: Spring Updates

We have several items to share with you in today's Pulse.

From the Teaching & Learning Committee

Hopefully you enjoyed your weekend! I often start mine on the drive home with Science Friday through NPR. This website is listed on the AASL Best Websites for good reason! Check it out and get curious!!

Description from AASL:

Covering the outer reaches of space to the tiniest microbes in our bodies, Science Friday provides free STEM activities, lessons, and resources for all learners, making science fun for everyone! Science Friday will spark students’ curiosity at a visceral level, on topics from Frankenstein to the La Brea Tar Pits, and from shrinking polar bears to an online rock collection (#neatrocks). There is so much to explore in this child’s world! Science Friday connects digital STEM resources to hands on learning. Some activities in Spanish. Grades 3 and up.

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PA Librarian Nominated as Unsung Hero

PSLA member Ellen Zschunke, librarian and media specialist at the Pine RoadElementarySchool in Huntingdon Valley, PA, has been nominated as an Unsung Hero of Bucks and Montgomery County Public Schools! The Council for the Advancement of Public Schools has nominated Ellen as follows:

This week’s Unsung Hero, Ellen Zschunke is the librarian and media specialist at the Pine RoadElementarySchool in Huntingdon Valley, and co-president of the Lower Moreland Township Education Association. She is beloved by her colleagues and students alike for her sunny personality and positive and down-to-earth approach to work and to life.

Regardless of how much she has scheduled, Ellen is always eager to help colleagues and students, “whether it’s with technology, locating a book, union questions, etc.,” said her nominator, and if she doesn’t know the answer, she’ll find out. She produces a morning television show every day of the week featuring fifth graders and “is just an all-around hero in the ways she handles life and is involved in so much.”

Besides her full-time teaching job, Ellen also coaches diving for Hatboro-Horsham School District and loves to cheer on other teachers and students, whether it’s a district musical, fundraiser, or other after school event. Her nominator added, “I wish I was as cool, calm and collected as she. She’s a rock star!”

With the grant money she’ll receive, Ellen plans to purchase Playaways, MP3 players with pre-loaded books. This format supports English Language Learners, those with learning needs like dyslexia or other print disabilities, and readers looking for a different way to enjoy the printed word. The $1,000 award will fund 16 Playaways. and the $2,000 award will fund 31 of these devices to help all learners access materials in a meaningful way. 

Be sure to view the videos about Ellen and our other Unsung Heroes and vote at the link below. There is no limit to the number of times that you can cast a ballot.

 









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Teaching & Learning Committee Survey


Hello everyone!
PSLA and the Teaching & Learning committee need to hear from you! 
We opened a survey during the annual conference to hear about your professional development needs and skills. If you haven't replied yet, please spend a few minutes to respond. This survey can guide our offerings over the next year and help meet the needs of our membership.
Thank you for your time!!

Joyce Valenza receives AASL Distinguished Service Award

Joyce Valenza receives AASL Distinguished Service Award

CHICAGO – Joyce Valenza, assistant teaching professor of library and information science at Rutgers University, is the recipient of the 2019 American Association of School Librarians’ (AASL) Distinguished Service Award. Sponsored by The Rosen Publishing Group, the $3,000 award recognizes an individual member of the library profession who has, over a significant period, made an outstanding national contribution to school librarianship and school library development.


After teaching for over two decades at Springfield Township (Pennsylvania) High School library, Valenza joined the faculty at Rutgers University’s Library and Information Science Department. In that capacity, she advises students on research projects that promote a better understanding of the impact of high-performing library programs on student learning. 

“Her scholarly contribution is enormous,” Ross Todd wrote in his letter of endorsement. “To date she has published 5 books, 10+ peer-reviewed papers, 9+ book chapters, 60+ articles in professional journals. This represents a distinguished level of leadership through scholarly work.”

“Joyce possesses encyclopedic knowledge of the research in our field,” wrote Michelle Luhtala in her nomination. “I stealthily take notes of names, studies, and publications she mentions in conversation knowing that if it is on her radar, it is worth reading. Among her many, many areas of expertise are literacies. Joyce examines, reexamines, rethinks, reframes these as our roles and affiliated technologies evolve.”

Valenza has served on AASL’s Best Apps for Teaching and Learning Committee and AASL’s Community of Scholars Task Force.  In 2017, Valenza was recognized as an inaugural AASL Social Media Superstar: Leadership Luminary.

“The common remark that our committee shared was that Joyce was future ready before' ‘future ready librarian,’” said Liz Deskins, award committee chair “She has been sharing, leading, encouraging, and challenging thousands of school librarians to keep striving to stay current and try new things. We thank you for all you’ve taught us, Joyce.”

The AASL award winners will be honored at the AASL Awards Ceremony during the 2019 ALA Annual Conference in Washington, D.C. The ceremony will be held from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. on Saturday, June 22. All are welcome to celebrate the accomplishments of their peers during this recognition event.

The American Association of School Librarians, www.aasl.org, a division of the American Library Association (ALA), empowers leaders to transform teaching and learning.

Creating a Culture of Collaboration: Strategies for Building Partnerships

Creating a Culture of Collaboration: Strategies for Building Partnerships 
Register Here

Thursday, April 25, 2019, 3 PM Central Time/4 PM Eastern Time

Presented by:
Ellen Stolarski, Librarian St. Marys Area Middle School St. Marys, Pennsylvania
Nancy Jo Lambert, Teacher-Librarian Reedy High School Frisco, TX
Jennifer Casa-Todd, Teacher-Librarian, Aurora, Ontario, Canada
Linda Dougherty, School Librarian & Ed Tech Consultant, St. Louis, Missouri

Webinar Description: 
This webinar will provide a variety of strategies for working with library stakeholders, with a focus on ways to build connections in terms of research and information literacy skills. This webinar will be presented by our 2018 ISTELib PLN Secondary award winner Ellen Stolarski.

Presenter Bio:
Ellen Stolarski is a librarian at a rural school library in Pennsylvania. As a librarian, she works to promote collaboration, technology,  a love of reading, and information literacy skills in her school.  She has participated in several programs outside of her library including PSLA's Emerging Leader Program (2014-15) and ILEADUSA (2016). She is also the co-chair of the Pennsylvania Young Reader's Choice Award committee. She is a Microsoft Innovative Education Expert and was awarded the ISTE Librarians Network PLN Secondary award in 2018.

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