Position Statement on Flexible Scheduling
The library program is fully integrated into the educational program so that students, teachers, and school librarians become partners in learning. This integration strengthens the teaching for learning process to insure students are active learners who guide and continually assess their learning process. Open access to a quality school library program is essential for students to develop the vital skills necessary to analyze, evaluate, interpret, and communicate information and ideas in a variety of formats. Inquiry skills are taught and learned within the context of the curriculum and may occur in the classroom, the library, or at home with 24/7 accessibility to a wide range of resources, technologies, and services.
The integrated library program philosophy requires an open schedule that includes flexible and equitable access to physical and virtual collections for staff and students. Classes must be flexibly scheduled into the library on an as needed basis to facilitate just-in-time research, training, and utilization of technology with the guidance of the teacher who is the subject specialist, and the librarian who is the information process specialist. The resulting lesson plans recognize that the length of the learning experience is dependent on learning needs rather than a fixed library time. Regularly scheduled classes in the school library to provide teacher release or preparation time prohibit this best practice. Students and teachers must be able to come to the library throughout the day to use information sources, read for pleasure, and collaborate with other students and teachers.
Collaboration with classroom teachers to design, implement and evaluate inquiry lessons cultivates high level learning experiences for students and is the catalyst that makes the integrated library program work. The teacher brings to the planning process knowledge of subject content and the student needs. The school librarian contributes a broad knowledge of resources and technology, an understanding of modern teaching methods, and a wide range of strategies that may be employed to help students learn inquiry skills. Together they are able to provide differentiated and adaptable experiences for students of all abilities and interests to meet the requirements of the curriculum.
The responsibility for flexibly scheduled library programs must be shared by the entire school community: the Board of Education, District Administration, Principal, School Librarian, Teachers, and the Library Support Staff.
The BOARD OF EDUCATION endorses the philosophy that the library program is fully integrated into the district’s educational program and ensures that flexible scheduling for libraries is maintained in all buildings and at all levels through district level policies.
The DISTRICT ADMINISTRATION supports this philosophy and ensures appropriate staffing levels so that all teachers, including the school librarians, can fulfill their professional responsibilities.
The PRINCIPAL creates the appropriate climate within the school by understanding and advocating the benefits of flexible scheduling to the faculty, by monitoring scheduling, by maintaining appropriate staffing levels, funding, and joint planning time for classroom teachers and school librarians.
The TEACHER and the SCHOOL LIBRARIAN work collaboratively to provide differentiated and adaptable experiences for students of all abilities. The collaborative lessons meet curricular requirements through relevant and engaging learning experiences that promote positive instructional use of time.
The LIBRARY SUPPORT STAFF works to maintain the daily operation of the library to allow the professional school librarian and teaching staff the time and flexibility to collaborate together to provide students with excellent educational experiences for learning.
The PARENTS advocate for a library program that provides their child with access 24/7. They promote the use of flexible scheduling so their students are able to come to the library throughout the day to use information sources, read for pleasure, and collaborate with the school librarian, other students, and teachers.
The STUDENTS stress the need for anytime access to their school library to assist them in completing their academic pursuits and exploring their personal interests.
Adopted 09/2011, Revised 06/2014