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Resources for School Librarians PDF Print E-mail
Last Updated ( Monday, 29 June 2015 )
MSLA Implementation Support for School Librarians PDF Print E-mail

Resource to support DESE model rubric system
Implementation support for school librarians

This resource document was developed by the school librarian evaluation task force of the Massachusetts School Library Association. The Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education has reviewed the contents for consistency with the classroom teacher rubric. 

Library services are essential to schools, and a well­-managed school library provides materials and services to give every student the opportunity to reach academic potential. The Massachusetts School Library Association task force developed this resource document to highlight the essential role the well-­managed school library program plays in a school. The resource provides examples of school library practices that promote academic rigor, individual and collaborative learning, problem solving, and responsible use of resources that support student success. 

This resource document describes practice that is common to school libraries in general. The task force acknowledges that the nature of the job varies according to school culture, funding and staffing levels, grade levels, and fixed vs. flexible school scheduling. The responsibilities of school librarians to whom this resource document may be applied will vary. Librarians and evaluators both should agree together on elements that have high priority in given environments. 

As a final note, it is worthwhile to emphasize that this resource document reflects the fact while teaching is one important role of school librarians, effective library programs rely on successful school librarian performance in multiple areas:

  • learning and teaching  
  • information access, including collection development 
  • program administration and library management 
  • technology leadership 
  • collaboration with school community 
  • support of school community  
Last Updated ( Wednesday, 30 July 2014 )
Twitter Chat PDF Print E-mail
 Join In! #MSLA
8-9 PM on the 2nd Tuesday each month:
Note: Each Twitter session is archived on Storify
Will resume in September
Topics will be determined by member input and announced prior to each chat. For more information about getting started on Twitter and participating in Twitter chats, please see    Please feel free to use #MSLA regularly when tweeting.  We look forward to connecting with you online!
   June 9, 2015
Serving ELL Students
 May 12, 2015
Joint chat with MSSAA
 April 14, 2015
What's your purpose?
 March 10, 2015
 February 10, 2015
#MSLA, #VASLchat:
ALA Youth Media
 January 13, 2015
2015 MSLA Conference:
Get psyched, get prepared!

 December 9, 2014
Read Across America,
Reading Promotion

 November 18, 2014
 October 14, 2014
Creating a reading culture,
book clubs, new title suggestions

 June 10, 2014
Summer Reading
May 13,  2014
DDMs, End of Year Reports
 April 8, 2014
Reading Promotion;
Nat'l Poetry Month
 March 18, 2014
January 14, 2014
 Digital Projects
December 10, 2013:
Sharing learning, resources, ideas from
#aasl13, #NCTE or elsewhere
November 12, 2013:
Educator evaluations,
goals and DDMs 

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 10 June 2015 )
SMART Goals PDF Print E-mail


Please use this form to share your teacher evaluation SMART goals.  Remember to indicate if you are sharing your Professional Practice Goal  or Student Learning Goal. Goals should have been approved by your primary evaluator before you share them here, and should be formulated as SMART goals (specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and timely).   Please also include the DDM you are using for your goal.  MSLA is providing this repository of goals as a courtesy to members.  However, we do not review them, nor does inclusion on this page imply that MSLA endorses any particular goal.

CONTRIBUTE your Smart Goals! []

VIEW the spreadsheet of members' contributions (as of 10/31/13)
Note: the spreadsheet is not editable; contribute your goals using the link,, above.
Last Updated ( Friday, 12 June 2015 )
Job Description: School Librarian PDF Print E-mail

What are the qualifications of a School Librarian?

To whom does s/he report?

What are the job goals?

What are the Roles and Responsibilities?

DOWNLOAD the Job Description Approved by the MSLA Executive Board (4/11)
PDF    Word Document 

DOWNLOAD the Job Description of L4L (AASL)
PDF    Word Document



Last Updated ( Tuesday, 05 July 2011 )
AASL Resolution: We are School Librarians PDF Print E-mail

RESOLUTION to standardize the use of the job title, “School Librarian”
    Approved January 15, 2010 by the AASL Board of Directors

Whereas, the overarching strategic goal of the American Association of School Librarians is to achieve universal recognition of school librarians as indispensable educational leaders; and

Whereas, the AASL Affiliate Assembly requested that the AASL Board of Directors choose a title for its professionals that is clear to other educators, administrators, and the public; and

Whereas, a recent AASL survey indicated confusion, misperceptions, and inconsistencies about various job titles in our profession; and

Whereas, AASL needed to agree on a common nomenclature for all publications and advocacy efforts; and

Whereas, the AASL’s leadership reviewed the data, identified the advantages and disadvantages of the various titles, and held a focused and extensive discussion.

Therefore be it resolved
, AASL officially adopts “school librarian” as the title which reflects the roles of the 21st century school library professional as leader, instructional partner, information specialist, teacher, and program administrator; be it further resolved that AASL will advance and promote the title “school librarian” to ensure universal recognition of school librarians as indispensible educational leaders.

The following guiding principles govern these actions: Open dialog concerning knowledge of our stakeholders’ needs, wants, and preferences; the current realities and evolving dynamics of our environment; the capacity and strategic position of our organization; and the ethical implications relevant to this decision.

Last Updated ( Friday, 12 June 2015 )
Standards for School Libraries PDF Print E-mail


Sample Curriculum Integrated K-12 Information Literacy Expectations. Appendix B: School Library Media Program Standards. MSLMA, 2003.


STANDARDS Compared: AASL, NETS, Partnership for 21st-Century Skills

 DOWNLOAD the document, developed in 2010 by Cassandra Barnett (2009-10 AASL President)

RUBRICS for Evaluating School Library Programs

DOWNLOAD the document ; Developed by MSLA in 2002



Last Updated ( Saturday, 06 February 2010 )
2007 National Standards for School Libraries PDF Print E-mail
Just announced at the AASL National Conference in Reno!
New national standards for school library media programs, available on the AASL web site:

This will be followed next year by a new mission statement and guidelines
for library media programs.

Last Updated ( Monday, 29 October 2007 )
Intellectual Freedom: Meeting the Challenge PDF Print E-mail
What is Intellectual Freedom?
"Intellectual freedom is the right of every individual to both seek and receive
information from all points of view without restriction. It provides for free
access to all expressions of ideas through which any and all sides of a question,
cause or movement may be explored."
              ~American Library Association

Guidelines for Meeting the Challenge

The MSLA Intellectual Freedom committee recommends the following proactive
guidelines for establishing and maintaining a strong library program and collection.
The ideas that follow will also help the librarian build allies and deflect potential
challenges should they arise.

Materials Selection Policy, approved by the School Committee

  • including Reconsideration Policy and form
  • including Collection Development Statement 
Collection Development
  • Use reviews to make decisions for  purchases; some recommended
    core review sources:
    • School Library Journal
    • Booklist
    • The Horn Book
  • Professional knowledge and experience
  • Examine new materials as they arrive

Library Climate

  • Welcoming atmosphere
  • Provide service for Students, Faculty, Administration, School Committee,
    Parents, Community Members


  • Back to School Night
  • Welcome Volunteers to work in your library
  • Library web site and brochures
  • Professional Development for staff
  • PTO presentations


  • Join professional organizations and listservs: MSLA, AASL, LM_NET
  • Stay informed about Intellectual Freedom groups and issues
    • ALA - Office for Intellectual Freedom
  • Be aware of pro-censorship organizations

IF a challenge comes… Don’t assume that an objection or criticism is the
beginning of a challenge

  • Try to resolve the concern informally
  • Review the material that is of concern
    • Look at it from the complainant’s perspective, as well as your own

Steps to follow to respond to a challenge
It is important to know and follow the formal steps in your district’s Selection Policy.
If your district does not have a Selection Policy in place, look at one from a similar
community, or look at the ALA Office for Intellectual Freedom’s
Workbook for Selection Policy Writing ” 

After the formal challenge is made

1. Provide the complainant with handouts as specified in the Selection Policy.
For ex:

  • the reconsideration form
  • reconsideration procedure
  • Library Bill of Rights)

2. Inform your principal and your library director immediately

  • Respect your district’s chain of command
  • Develop a procedural strategy with your principal
  • 3. Keep detailed written records

    4. An objective third party should be present during any discussion of the challenge

    5. Notify the MSLA Executive Director, Kathy Lowe This email address is being protected from spam bots, you need Javascript enabled to view it

    6. Consult with other library teachers (locally or electronically)

    • Do not assume confidentiality, especially with e-mail
    7. Contact allies
    • Faculty members
    • Parents
    • Community members

      Keep in mind: the “target” is the material, NOT the librarian.

    Further Resources from the American Library Association

    AASL Intellectual Freedom Brochure  

    Coping With Challenges and Censorship in Schools
         Contain strategies and topics specifically for school libraries

    Children's Internet Protection Act (CIPA)
          Summary of the legislation and guidelines for schools and libraries


    Last Updated ( Thursday, 17 October 2013 )
    Long Range Planning PDF Print E-mail
    Long Range Planning

    From the Masssachusetts Board of Library Commissioners webpage:

    "Libraries must have an approved Long-Range Plan on file with the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners in order to apply for both Library Services and Technology Act funds and the Massachusetts Public Library Construction Program. Libraries that have done planning have repeatedly confirmed how important the process has been in their local efforts to gain recognition, funding and staffing for accomplishing the goals and objectives set out in their plans." 
    Last Updated ( Monday, 07 January 2013 )
    Rubrics for Assessing your School Library Program PDF Print E-mail

    Rubrics for Assessing your School Library Program Download
    1) Teaching and Learning
    2) Information Access and Delivery
    3) Program Administration

    Last Updated ( Friday, 17 November 2006 )
    Standards for 21st Century Learning PDF Print E-mail


    2003 MSLA Standards download  

    K-12 Curriculum Integrated
    Information Literacy Benchmarks  

    2007 AASL National Standards:

    Just announced at the AASL National Conference in Reno!
    New national standards for school library media programs, available on the AASL web site:

    This will be followed next year by a new mission statement and guidelines
    for library media programs.
    Last Updated ( Monday, 29 October 2007 )

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