The information world, the skills needed to succeed in the 21st century, the students learning in this environment, and schools themselves are evolving. School library information specialists serve a vital function in this new environment as information specialists, curriculum partners, teachers, technologists, change agents, and leaders.
You interact directly with young people, engaging their passions, curiosities, appetite for learning and love of reading. You develop and organize information resources and educate students and teachers to find, evaluate, use, and manage information. You serve the needs of all children with their variety of abilities, learning preferences, and cultural understandings. The school library media center is important as a welcoming place in which students can engage in self-discovery and self-directed inquiry, free to move beyond the familiar, without fear of failure and with the support of warm, personal attention. You support the right of people of all ages to intellectual freedom and the right of people, regardless of economic status, to equity of access to information.
These values are central to librarianship in a digital world. School library media professionals serve the needs of students through creating and managing a variety of resources, services and relationships. As a professional, you select and provide access to a wide range of materials and technologies to support the curriculum and foster the recreational and imaginative as well as educational needs of students. As library information specialist and teacher, you actively collaborate with classroom teachers and other members of the learning community to integrate resources into the curriculum to meet the diverse needs of students. In so doing, you act as an instructional partner and leader. The school library information specialist assists and teaches students and their teachers to use information technology and to develop 21st century literacy skills. You advocate persuasively for the value of books, reading, information literacy, equity of access to information, lifelong learning, and freedom of inquiry.
Want to see how a 21st century library information specialist creates a virtual library?