AASL awards season opens with more than $50,000 in opportunities

For Immediate Release
Tue, 10/12/2010


Melissa Jacobsen

CHICAGO – The American Association of School Librarians' (AASL) prestigious awards program will offer more than $50,000 in awards in 2011 to AASL members. AASL's 10 awards recognize excellence and showcase best practices in the school library field in categories that include research, collaboration, leadership and innovation.
New this year, AASL personal members are required to fill out applications using AASL's new online awards database.

"AASL awards are available to acknowledge excellence in many areas of school librarianship," said AASL President Nancy Everhart. "As you focus on goals for the new school year, plan to apply for one of these awards or grants."

The 2011 AASL awards include the following:
  • The National School Library Program of the Year (NSLPY) Award, sponsored by Follett Library Resources, recognizes school districts and single schools for exemplary school library programs that are fully integrated into the school's curriculum. Winners receive a crystal obelisk and $10,000 each in two categories (one District award and two Single school awards).
  • The Collaborative School Library Award, $2,500, sponsored by Highsmith, recognizes and encourages collaboration and partnerships between school librarians and teachers in meeting goals outlined in "Empowering Learners: Guidelines for School Library Programs" through joint planning of a program, unit or event in support of the curriculum and using media center resources.
  • The AASL Research Grant, $2,500, is given to up to two school librarians, library educators, library information science or education professors to conduct innovative research aimed at measuring and evaluating the impact of school library programs on learning and education. This grant is now sponsored by Heinemann-Raintree.
  • The ABC-CLIO Leadership Grant, up to $1,750, sponsored by ABC-CLIO, is given to school library associations that are AASL affiliates for planning and implementing leadership programs at the state, regional or local levels.
  • The Distinguished Service Award, $3,000, sponsored by Baker & Taylor, recognizes an individual member of the library profession who has, over a significant period of time, made an outstanding national contribution to school librarianship and school library development.
  • The Distinguished School Administrator Award, $2,000, sponsored by ProQuest, is given to a school administrator who has made worthy contributions to the operations of an exemplary school library and to advancing the role of the school library in the educational program.
  • The Frances Henne Award, $1,250, sponsored by Greenwood Publishing Group, enables a school librarian with five or fewer years in the field to attend an American Library Association (ALA) Annual Conference or AASL National Conference for the first time.
  • The Information Technology Pathfinder Award, $1,000 to the school librarian and $500 to the library, sponsored by Follett Software Company, recognizes and honors a school librarian who demonstrates vision and leadership through the use of information technology to build lifelong learners. There are two categories: Elementary and Secondary.
  • The Innovative Reading Grant, $2,500, sponsored by Capstone, is designed to fund literacy projects for grades K-9 that promote the importance of reading and facilitate literacy development by supporting current reading research, practice and policy.
  • The Intellectual Freedom Award, $2,000 to the winner and $1,000 to the school library of the winner's choice, sponsored by ProQuest, is given for upholding the principles of intellectual freedom as set forth by AASL and the ALA.
The American Association of School Librarians, www.aasl.org, 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.