Statements of Concern
Concerns and AASL
Concerns submitted to the AASL Affiliate Assembly from each of the regions across the United States are important communication links between the AASL Board of Directors and school librarians at the front lines. Concerns enable the AASL Board to keep their fingers on the pulse of the profession across the country and develop strategies for the issues facing the profession.
Presenting the concerns at Affiliate Assembly meetings builds awareness and provides an opportunity for input. Affiliate Delegates are able to network, share, and brainstorm strategies at the state and regional levels. This essential and highly effective process makes the association and Affiliates responsive to the needs of the profession and strong advocates of school library programs across the country.
Statement of Concern Process
Two to three months prior to the ALA Annual Conference, Affiliate Assembly Delegates meet with their state association members and identify items of concern.
Delegates work collaboratively (either face-to-face or virtually) with the Representative and other Delegates from their region. With the Representative's leadership, Delegates combine similar state concerns and complete a Statement of Concern form.
The Representative reviews submitted concerns for complete information and whether the action items requested are doable by the AASL Board of Directors. Once complete, the Representative submits concerns to the Affiliate Assembly Chair.
At ALA Annual Conference, all members of the Affiliate Assembly Executive Committee meet and review concerns submitted. The leadership votes and the concerns meeting the criteria of "complete" and "doable" are forwarded to the Affiliate Assembly for action.
The Assembly evaluates concerns over two meetings. At Affiliate Assembly I, Delegates break into groups (not necessarily region specific) to discuss, refine, and/or combine similar concerns. At the end of the meeting, groups return edited concerns to the Affiliate Assembly Chair for presentation at Affiliate Assembly II. At this second meeting, minor editing and discussion may occur prior to a vote on whether to forward the concern to the AASL Executive Committee.
At their fall meeting, the AASL Executive Committee evaluates concerns approved by the Assembly. The committee develops a plan of action or crafts a response to each concern as needed.
At the following ALA Midwinter Meeting, the AASL President reports out at Affiliate Assembly the status and action taken on each concern.
Delegates complete the Statement of Concern process when they convey the AASL President's report back to the state organization.
The links below lead to a blog-like repository of concerns submitted between 2005 and 2011. Each entry includes the original concern; what action was taken by the Executive Committee, the Assembly, and the AASL Board; and relevant links to more information. If concerns were revised or combined, the revised text appears. Entries are also tagged by subject matter, the year submitted, and the region submitting the concern.
More information on actions and discussions of concerns presented can be found in the minutes of the Affiliate Assembly meetings at ALA Annual Conferences.