Urge your state school library association to join School Librarians Learning Networks

One of the greatest joys for me is learning with and from other librarians. It is one of the features that makes AISL so wonderful!

Presumably Steve Tetreault, a librarian with a career in New Jersey public schools, feels the same way. He is working to get the School Librarian Learning Network (SLLN) up and running.

The intent of SLLN is to scale the PD that is taking place in different state school librarian associations. Tetreault aims to have different state associations share their online professional development trainings across the SLLN’s entire membership. A new collaboration across states could provide “virtual professional development opportunities on a regular, rotating basis.” (From their homepage.)

Because it is summer, and I am a bit slow, I now have a bit more information to add: Steve reports that his goal is to get as many state organizations as possible working together in a coordinated effort to offer several PD opportunities a month, every month, to school librarians across the country; with some coordination, that would make it so each state org would only have to figure out a small number of PD offerings each year, while being able to take advantage of a whole lot more. At the moment, joining SLLN is pretty straight-forward – anyone can visit the site to see free learning opportunities he has come across and use the links to sign up.

Is your state a member? So far New Jersey; Louisiana; Washington, DC; and Nebraska have joined. I have contacted California School Library Association and requested they join.

I urge AISL members to reach out to your state TL organizations and request that they join SLLN, as well. Together, we can continue to update, grow, and learn as a profession!

Not only is this network a cool idea, but as we are seeing a lot of threats to libraries that we need to be discussing across state lines. These threats both make use of local laws and government structures and of anti-library groups are coordinating more fully across different states with the goal of impacting how libraries function in each location.

In other words, we need a national network to help us tackle local issues. I’ve been chatting with TLs around the country and am discovering that a librarian who is very deeply educated about anti-database legislation in their own state may not have any idea what the organizations and conversations are on the national stage.

We need to talk to each other, learn together – and from each other.

I was thinking of Cathy Leverkus’ AISL publishing group and her point that AISL members need to reach out and share our wealth of experience with others in our profession. So, not only can we request that our state teacher librarian associations join this nationwide endeavor, we can also offer to lead AP that our states can offer as their contributions to SLLN.

Please join me in supporting this wonderful national initiative!

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