AASL Shares EDI Resources for Educators

For Immediate Release
Tue, 06/30/2020

Contact:

Jennifer Habley

Manager, Web Communications

American Association of School Librarians (AASL)

312-280-4383

jhabley@ala.org

CHICAGO – The American Association of School Librarians (AASL) has released Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI) resources created by the 2019-2020 Presidential Initiative Task Force. Advised by AASL President Mary Keeling, the committee, hosted office hours, designed informative bookmarks, and presented a webinar on EDI in the school library. The resources can be found at www.ala.org/aasl/all/EDI.  

“As president of AASL, I had the honor and privilege of choosing a project and assembling a team to work with me on it. I could not be prouder of what my presidential task force has accomplished this year,” said Keeling. “They wanted to empower school librarians to create truly inclusive services, collections, and spaces. They wanted children to find in their school libraries books that tell their story in many ways. Through their work this year, they have created many opportunities for school librarians to learn about and begin to understand issues like micro-aggressions, implicit bias, and systemic racism.”

The EDI resources include archives of live office hours held throughout Keeling’s presidential term where attendees discussed topics such as how to grow a diverse collection, how to engage all students, and how to offer library programming that meets the needs of all students.  It also features the webinar “Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion: The School Library and Me in the Global Learning Community” presented during the AASL Chapters meetings and bookmarks the task force created containing collection and resource recommendations.

Said Keeling, “I want to thank chair Erika Long; members Rachel Altobelli, Michelle Easley, Klaudia Janek, Maegen Rose, and Chiquita Toure; and board liaison Anita Cellucci for their vision, hard work, and friendship. I know their impact will extend beyond the year we spent together.”

The presidential initiative provides an opportunity for the AASL President to proactively advance an issue of importance while simultaneously supporting the AASL Strategic Plan. When AASL recently updated its strategic plan, EDI was purposefully included as one of the association’s core values. The AASL Board of Directors felt EDI must be considered in everything AASL does and represents. The materials from the task force are the beginning of AASL resources to help school librarians mindfully consider EDI when designing their practice.

The American Association of School Librarians, www.aasl.org, a division of the American Library Association (ALA), empowers leaders to transform teaching and learning.