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School Librarians Help Students Achieve: Here’s the Evidence!

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[Editor's Note: When we went looking for an author and expert to cover the theme Librarians and Assessment, we quickly found our way to Violet Harada of the University of Hawaii's Library and Information Science Program, whose considerable work in this area resulted in, among other things, her being invited to deliver a keynote talk at last fall's AASL Fall Forum on Assessing Student Learning in the School Library Media Center. Harada sent us an article she and two colleagues had just published in The Golden Key, the journal of the Hawaii Association of School Librarians (HASL), in fall 2006. We think the article deserves wider distribution, so, with permission from HASL, we are pleased to include the article in this issue of MultiMedia & Internet@Schools.]

A critical component of school reform is accountability at all levels of education. At the school level, accountability focuses directly on what students are learning and how well they are learning. While classroom teachers have been wrestling with this challenge for years, school librarians across the U.S. are also realizing that assessing for learning is crucial in their work with students.

Librarians in Hawaii have seized this challenge by the horns and launched an initiative that might very well be a first in the nation. Twenty-four K-12 librarians are voluntarily participating in a yearlong professional development entitled, School Librarians Help Students Achieve: Here's the Evidence! The project is a collaborative venture involving the Hawaii Association of School Librarians, the University of Hawaii's Library and Information Science Program, and the Hawaii State Department of Education's School Library Services. The intended outcome is to have librarians develop evidence folders to communicate what their students have achieved through library instruction. The audience for the folder is the stakeholder community including administrators, faculty, and school community councils. The rest of this article further defines the professional development initiative and chronicles how participants are striving to build these folders.

Rationale for the Professional Development Effort

Complete article is available now, or will be shortly, in a variety of formats — Preview (free), Full Text, Text+Graphics, and Page Image PDF — courtesy of ITI's InfoCentral. CLICK HERE and search “Multimedia & Internet@Schools” for the story by title.


 
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