Project Connect Develops Toolkit for Future-Ready Librarians
- By Dian Schaffhauser
Project Connect, an initiative sponsored by Follett, is promoting "future-ready" libraries and librarians in K-12. To meet this goal, a library leadership committee met during the recent International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) conference in Philadelphia, where it developed plans for a "toolkit for transformation." The toolkit will include a framework for revamping relevant job descriptions, roles and evaluation rubrics for school librarians.
Project Connect participants also plan to share success stories from programs where school librarians are leading, teaching and supporting 21st-century learning. They will create videos, webinars, whitepapers and possibly micro credentials that librarians and others can earn as they develop innovations in their educational practices.
According to Carolyn Foote, librarian at Westlake High School and the Eanes Independent School District in Austin, TX, "The education landscape is changing rapidly, and libraries play a key role in the shift so many schools are making. With their information literacy skills and curriculum connections, tech-savvy librarians are uniquely qualified to collaborate with teachers and administrators to lead schools forward."
In a video about Project Connect, Nebraska's Lincoln Public Schools Superintendent Steve Joel noted that if librarians and media specialists are not brought along "with this digital transformation that's occurring, then we're leaving behind what I would consider one of the most important aspects of educational delivery."
The leadership committee will next meet as part of a focus group in Seattle at the School Library Journal (SLJ) Leadership Summit in September.
Dian Schaffhauser is a former senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal, Campus Technology and Spaces4Learning.