WASHINGTON, D.C. – The American Library Association (ALA) says the Department of Education’s National Education Technology Plan (NETP) presents significant challenges that will take the coordinated effort of many stakeholders to overcome, and libraries are a resource that should be leveraged as the plan’s recommendations are carried out on the state and local levels.
The ALA filed comments to the Department of Education in response to its call for public comment on the NETP to inform the agency of the ways school libraries integrate innovative technology into our nation’s schools and prepare students to thrive in the 21st century.
“Today’s graduates must be able to access, process, and utilize information found in a variety of formats. They must be able to create and then share the new knowledge they build. These skills are part of information literacy – and something the school library community is uniquely prepared to deliver,” Emily Sheketoff, executive director of the ALA Washington Office, said in the association’s comments.
“Without these critical information literacy skills, including digital literacy skills, our K-12 students will not be able to use the technologies available to them productively upon graduation as they enter post secondary programs and eventually enter the 21st century workforce.”
The ALA’s comments focus on the NETP’s sections on 1.0 Learning, 3.0 Teaching, 4.0 Infrastructure, and 5.0 Productivity. Within each section, ALA’s comments address the overarching principles illustrated by providing examples of the role the school librarian can play in helping the Department achieve its vision for the specific recommendations.