Did you know it’s National Friends of Libraries Week? While we often think of these groups as the ones who run the book sales for our public library counterparts, schools can take advantage of friends groups as well!
ALA’s United for Libraries Division has some wonderful resources for you if you’d like to explore starting one in your district or at your campus. Check out their toolkit for school specific ideas, written by Executive Director, Sally Gardner Reed:
There are many routes to take with developing a friends group–leverage existing parent organizations, use students, find a community partner who would like to support the library! Friends can help with fundraising such as bookfairs, volunteer their time helping with clerical duties, or even be advisory in nature.
One thing we know is that the school library is not the same place it was a decade ago. By bringing in members of the community to see that we haven’t been replaced by the Internet, we are educating the public about how our roles and our libraries have evolved. It does take time and a commitment on our part, however, the rewards are potentially limitless. The best of all is that by involving community stakeholders in our library program, weÂ are growing advocates–a type of collaboration we all need!
Author: Jennifer Laboon
Jennifer LaBoon is the Coordinator of Library Technology in Fort Worth ISD. She serves on the AASL Blog Committee, on the Executive Board of the Texas Library Association, volunteers with a local children’s musical theater group, and is an avid TCU fan.
Categories: Community/Teacher Collaboration