Saturday, April 18, 2015

M = Media Specialists

A to Z Blog Challenge: Day Thirteen

Over the course of this school year I've had the opportunity to visit various elementary school libraries and meet many wonderful media specialists, assistants, and volunteers. What I found in these libraries varied immensely from school district to school district.

Some districts are still lucky enough to have media specialists on staff, a generous book budget to keep their collection up to date, and an actual library class that they teach. Others are not so fortunate. In many schools the children are only allowed time to check out books once every week or two. They go to a random shelf with their rulers and hopefully find something that might interest them or they can ask a library clerk to help them.

In other schools, I found more than half of the library space was taken up by computers. One of my tutoring students mentioned that their school was giving library books away to students because they were turning the library into "something else." Some libraries had smart boards but no media specialists to utilize them.

I met many wonderful library staff members who are not media specialists but clerks with little to no training who are doing their very best to maintain a library for the children. They would do anything to have their media specialists back. 

I wonder how anyone thinks a library, equipped with books, as well as computers and technology, AND a media specialist isn't a priority in elementary schools. It seems that media specialists have become a privilege and not a necessity.

Linda Bozzo has published more than 50 nonfiction books for the school and library market. For more information about Linda and her books, you can visit her website.

Copyright 2015 Linda Bozzo 

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