Sandy Kelly Bio

Sandy Kelly I started my elementary, classroom teaching career in Woburn, in the 1970’s and early days of Prop 2 1/2. As a result of the annual "pink slip," I was rehired each summer, for seven years, to teach a different elementary grade, always getting the last class available! In my eighth year, the next job available was that of elementary school librarian. The district gave me a one year waiver to get certified while I did the job at FIVE schools. I worked there for 11 years before staying home with my three children. I returned to work in Westford and later at the K-8 public school in Carlisle.

In 1997, I completed a Master's in Education. After hearing Gary Hartzell speak about the Invisible Librarian at our annual conference, I went right back to school and completed the courses and internship in Educational Leadership. The experience and training gave me a renewed perspective but my heart remained in the school library. That was where I felt I was making a difference with students and teachers. I still believe this is true and I made the right decision for me.

The school library or the Learning Commons is the heart of the school. It is a true place of innovation, creative thinking and collaboration. It is where we find the quiet ones, the boisterous ones, the troubled ones and future leaders. It is the safe place where kids can be themselves and find their passions.

Since that time, I have received my National Board certification as School Library Teacher, Early Childhood through Young Adult. It has been one of the best things I have done. The National Board certification lends a great deal of credibility to our profession, it is recognized across the country. I continue to use my credentials and position on the MSLA executive board to promote and improve school libraries across the Commonwealth. The school library teacher is the only person in the school that works directly with ALL students and ALL teachers across ALL curriculum areas. School librarians work collaboratively to improve instruction, student achievement and information literacy.

We can and do make a difference!