Sydney Daily Telegraph education journalist, Maralyn Parker, has taken up our cause with an excellent opinion piece in today’s Tele. (See page 28.) It also appears, with minor changes, on her blog, with links to our petition and to The Hub. There is an opportunity to comment 🙂
She has discovered that some 2802 new primary school libraries will be built, although no one can give her the numbers of qualified TLs staffing them.
She might have said we have had no government set standards since Books and Beyond (1977), since, of course, we have our excellent professional standards, Learning for the Future (ASLA/ALIA, 2001), and there were reports after the Fenwick report in 1966 which attempted to evaluate the Commonwealth’s Australian School Libraries Programs. But these were not national reviews as such.
The effects of “flexibility and choice” in staffing on school libraries needs to be made clear also. Even NSW, which has long staffed libraries outside of the established formula, is looking at trialling the “devil-ution” of staffing, now common in other states. Next year this flexiblility is to be trialled in 47 schools. This is how principals are often forced to cash in some positions for others, and lose their teacher librarians.
But she has a link to the ASLRP survey snapshots! And she understands our value to students and learning. So, thank you, Maralyn Parker, for supporting our cause, and thereby, building a real education revolution.
Leave your comments on her blog. Let the general public, especially parents, know we need a national review.
Your local media should also be interested. Contact them too!