2016-2017 KASL Advocacy Initiative

Together, We Are Stronger

From now until April 17, 2017, School Librarians in Kansas have an exciting opportunity to make a difference to our profession. Due to the passage of ESSA (Every Student Succeeds Act) this past January, Kansas (KSDE) and the State Board of Education are currently crafting a plan to tie into the federal regulations. Kansas School Librarians have this year to influence the state response to the federal law.

The good news is that in addition to AASL moving mountains to make the inclusion of school librarians in ESSA happen, they also continue to support state affiliates by developing a framework to help us promote the work that librarians do. In response, KASL Council has created an advocacy initiative to address this specific issue for the coming year. The initiative will eventually involve three components, but the first of these is a social media campaign.

Beginning August 1, KASL Advocacy will post a new “talking point” to the KASL-L each week that ties into the goal of promoting the school librarian’s role in ensuring student success. The same message will be posted to KASL’s twitter account, web page, and Facebook. Your role is to send that message on to your contacts using whatever social media tools you normally use. Sometimes, hashtags will be suggested so that we may hit a particular constituency we need to impress.

In addition to sharing the message, we also suggest making the message even more powerful by personalizing it with a snapshot of whatever is happening in your library or your school (that you are influencing) with a brief statement and your location. If you have a cell phone, now is the time to justify all the money you spend on it! Snap pictures all. the. time.

The more KASL members who participate, the more effective the plan will be. You can jump in and participate any time.

Example – Week One:  Post the following message using the hashtags recommended (along with any others that will fit)

School Librarians prepare to Ensure Student Success. #kansascan #kaslks

Then, with this post we recommend posting a photo of library prep or something you are doing to prepare for the beginning of school.

Spread the word. These talking points could help you with local advocacy as well. At the end of the year, you will have accumulated lots of examples of what you do to “ensure student success.” Reformatted slightly, you have an instant annual report!

Marla Wigton, President
Martha House, President-Elect
Nancy McFarlin, Advocacy and Past President
Brenda Lemon, Treasurer
Rachel Yoder, Secretary
Ruth McCauley, Promotions

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