CHICAGO — In theory if not in practice, traditional school library career planning went something like this: get a degree, find a job, work towards tenure, then remain in the same district until retirement. If that was ever actually the case, it certainly isn’t any longer. School librarians know that making smart choices and planning strategically are the best ways to create a career that is both within their control and professionally fulfilling. In “School Librarian’s Career Planner,” published by ALA Editions, school library authority Hilda K. Weisburg offers a hands-on roadmap for both long-time school librarians and those who have recently entered the profession with a background in education. Demonstrating how to successfully carve out a unique niche within the educational community, she shows school librarians how to:
- Present themselves to stakeholders, from the first interview through day-to-day job duties;
- Learn the workings of the school and district while demonstrating expertise;
- Develop the management skills needed to assume various leadership positions, both official and unofficial;
- Stay current with developments in pedagogy and technology, and incorporate them into the fabric of the school;
- Prepare for possible changes due to staff cuts or a personal decision.
Weisburg retired as library media specialist at Morristown High School in Morristown, N.J. and has taught graduate courses at William Paterson University and Rutgers University. A past president of the New Jersey Association of School Librarians (NJASL), she is the association’s delegate to AASL’s Affiliate Assembly, which she has served as chair. Currently, she is on the ALA Literacy Committee and AASL’s Retiree Task Force. She has served on numerous other AASL committees as well. With Ruth Toor, she has written 14 books for library media specialists, including two for ALA Editions, “Being Indispensable: A School Librarian’s Guide to Becoming an Invaluable Leader “ and “New on the Job: A School Library Media Specialist’s Guide to Success.” She is now the publisher and sole editor of the bimonthly electronic newsletter School Librarian’s Workshop, which has been in publication since 1980. She has given numerous presentations and staff development workshops at AASL and state library media conferences and in many other locations.
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