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"Standards for the 21st-Century Learner" Launched During AASL National Conference

Posted Oct 26, 2007
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The American Association of School Librarians (AASL) has announced the launch of its "Standards for the 21st-Century Learner." The announcement was made at the AASL National Conference & Exhibition in Reno, Nevada. During the October 25 Opening General Session , AASL president Sara Kelly Johns unveiled the publication, and all attendees received a free copy.

"The new standards were developed by some of the best minds in the school library field," Johns said. "AASL hopes that these standards will provide a foundation for a strong library media program in every school, where our students will research expertly, think critically, problem-solve well, read enthusiastically and use information ethically. Our students will succeed."

Early in 2006, acting in accordance with the AASL strategic plan, the AASL Board of Directors voted to establish the Learning Standards Rewrite Task Force, whose charge was to develop new AASL standards for student learning in the 21st Century. The task force included co-chairs Cassandra Barnett and Gail Dickinson, Eugene Hainer, Melissa Johnston, Marcia Mardis and Barbara Stripling.

The task force began with an intensive face-to-face meeting and worked virtually and during conferences over the next several months. To ensure that the new standards reflect the best of our thinking as a profession, the task force gathered input and feedback from the membership and other library media professionals throughout the whole process. Drafts were posted on the Web site for comment, AASL held an open forum for discussion of the draft during the 2007 Midwinter Meeting and a wiki was utilized for further input from the field.

A complimentary PDF version of the standards is available for download on the AASL Web site at For those wishing to purchase multiple copies, they will be available through the ALA Online Store.

Source: American Association of School Librarians,

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