For immediate release | April 16, 2012

AASL president comments on White House response to school library petition

CHICAGO — President Obama’s administration has responded to a petition created in support of school library programs by Carl Harvey, Indiana school librarian and the president of the American Association of School Librarians (AASL). Harvey discusses the response from Roberto Rodriguez, special assistant to the president for education policy, in his latest blog post at

By using the “We the People” petition website provided by, Harvey called on the administration to ensure every child in America has access to an effective school library program by using the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) to provide dedicated funding to help support those programs. Posted on Jan. 5, 2012, the petition had one month to garner the 25,000 signatures needed to require a response from the White House. Through grassroots communication efforts, the threshold was crossed Jan. 31 – four days before the Feb. 4 deadline. To date, the petition has received 28,619 signatures.

The petition and White House response can be read in their entirety at

The American Association of School Librarians,, a division of the American Library Association (ALA), promotes the improvement and extension of library services in elementary and secondary schools as a means of strengthening the total education program. Its mission is to advocate excellence, facilitate change and develop leaders in the school library field.