Scott Allen, Larra Clark, Margaret Caspe, Johanna Pringle

Changing Policy to Support Family Engagement

January 22, 2017

That was the question at the center of “Improving Federal and State Policy to Support Family Engagement in Libraries,” a Saturday morning panel sponsored by the Public Library Association (PLA) at ALA’s 2017 Midwinter Meeting & Exhibits in Atlanta. Caspe reinforced that family engagement is a shared responsibility, can happen anywhere, and can happen at … Continue reading Changing Policy to Support Family Engagement

2016 Year in Review

2016 Year In Review

January 3, 2017

Hayden Becomes 14th Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden, 2003–2004 American Library Association (ALA) president and former director of Enoch Pratt Free Library in Baltimore, made history by becoming the first African American and the first woman to head the Library of Congress. She was sworn in September 14.     ESSA Shows ALA’s Grassroots Advocacy … Continue reading 2016 Year In Review

Detail of statement from Illinois School Library Media Association

Speaking Out Against Chicago School Library Cuts

September 8, 2016

Patti Fleser, ISLMA president and school librarian at Deer Path Middle School in Lake Forest, Illinois, says the open letter addresses the “trend of school districts cutting their librarian positions at a time when it’s been proven over and over again that school librarians and effective school library programs increase students’ academic achievement.” ISLMA’s letter … Continue reading Speaking Out Against Chicago School Library Cuts

Keith Michael Fiels

Advocacy School Is In Session

September 1, 2016

With a sustained national advocacy campaign our first priority, the Libraries Transform public awareness program launched last year. More than 3,000 libraries and supporters have already signed on to be part of the campaign. Last year we saw 144,001 page views of, 12,387 downloads of the library toolkit, 22,000 #LibrariesTransform mentions on Twitter, 65,000 … Continue reading Advocacy School Is In Session

From left: Marci Merola of ALA's Office for Library Advocacy, and Leslie Preddy, president of the American Association of School Librarians.

Unpacking ESSA for the Library Ecosystem

June 26, 2016

AASL President Leslie Preddy opened the program by emphasizing the spectrum from public library to school library to academic library in each learner’s life. Communities with strong libraries have increased student success. Vailey Oehlke, Public Library Association president and director of libraries at Multnomah County (Oreg.) Library, explained how the provisions in ESSA are a … Continue reading Unpacking ESSA for the Library Ecosystem

Keith Michael Fiels

Every Student Succeeds

March 1, 2016

Examples of these changes include new provisions in the ESSA regarding local education agencies assisting schools in developing effective school library programs to provide students the opportunity to develop digital literacy skills and other ways to improve academic achievement. The bill also authorizes states and local educational agencies to use these federal funds to support … Continue reading Every Student Succeeds

OITP Deputy Director Larra Clark asks how many people in the audience are logged into the conference center's Wi-Fi

Washington Office Update

January 10, 2016

Washington Office Executive Director Emily Sheketoff started by noting “how important your voice is in the successes ALA achieves,” specifically citing the passage of the Every Student Succeeds Act in December. Sheketoff said lawmakers were able to get library-friendly requirements into the bill because ALA members made the effort to call and write to their … Continue reading Washington Office Update

Screenshot of President Obama signing the Every Student Succeeds Act, December 10, 2015.

Libraries Win as President Signs ESSA

December 10, 2015

A major reauthorization bill overhauling K-12 education policy–the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA)–has been signed into law by President Obama and in a significant victory for ALA’s decade of advocacy efforts, it includes provisions favorable to libraries. ALA President Sari Feldman praised all ALA members, crediting their unified, collective, high-impact messages to their Members of … Continue reading Libraries Win as President Signs ESSA

Capitol Building (Photo: Laurie D. Borman)

Senate Passes Every Student Succeeds Act

December 9, 2015

AASL President Leslie Preddy and ALA President Sari Feldman released the following joint statement regarding today’s developments: “The Senate vote brings America’s schoolchildren one step closer to the school library resources and other tools that they need to succeed as 21st century students. For school-age students, ESSA represents an historic new chapter in federal support … Continue reading Senate Passes Every Student Succeeds Act

AASL, ALA applaud the addition of school libraries to Every Student Succeeds Act

November 30, 2015

In response to today’s announcement, American Association of School Librarians (AASL) President Leslie Preddy and American Library Association (ALA) President Sari Feldman released the following joint statement: “The AASL and ALA are thrilled that the members of the House and Senate Conference Committee recognized the importance of an effective school library program and understood the … Continue reading AASL, ALA applaud the addition of school libraries to Every Student Succeeds Act