YALSA President's Page
According to the most recent PLDS survey, there was an almost 20% drop in the number of full-time staff dedicated to teen services in public libraries in the past five years. There was also an almost 7% drop in the number of school librarians from 2004-2011. We all know—deep into our cores—that teens need libraries and the holistic range of programs and services that teen services librarians are uniquely positioned to provide. A 20% and 7% drop? That’s more than a problem; it’s a call to action. My theme for the year is “Amplified: Speaking Up for Teens and Libraries.” During my year, I will work with the YALSA Board and with members to implement advocacy efforts as outlined in YALSA’s Action Plan. Learn more about it via this Google Hangout.
I encourage each and every YALSA member and supporter to become a savvy advocate and to work with your colleagues, your teens, and your communities to do the same. Speak up. Reach out. Tell your library’s story. We know that teens need libraries, but we need to work together on local, regional, and national levels to make sure that parents, elected officials, community partners, school districts, and administrators understand the unique role that libraries fill in helping prepare teens for college, careers and life.
Luckily, YALSA and ALA have a treasure trove of new and forthcoming resources to help us along the road and I’ll be doing my best throughout this coming year to keep the conversation going. Let’s stand our ground. YALSA and ALA can and do speak up for teen services, but we need you to amplify that message!
Shannon is holding a series of virtual town halls during her year. Access the Oct. 2, 2013 e-chat with Shannon via Adobe Connect. The next e-chats are scheduled for Feb. 5, 2014 and May 7, 2014 from 2-3pm, eastern, via Adobe Connect.
Shannon Peterson’s term as President runs from July 2013 through June 2014. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or @shantasmagoria on Twitter.