School librarians included in National Education Legislation

School Librarians Included in Newly Signed National Education Legislation

RHODE ISLAND - President Obama has signed the Every Student Succeeds Act, drafted in part by Rhode Island Senators Jack Reed and Sheldon Whitehouse, which includes language recognizing the importance of school library programs. 

Reed was quoted in a press release:
“Effective school library programs are essential supports for educational success. Knowing how to find and use information are essential skills for college, careers, and life in general.  A good school library, staffed by a trained school librarian, is where students develop and hone these skills.  In too many communities, libraries are neglected or considered an afterthought amidst the many other worthy education priorities competing for funding.  But we know that school library programs can have a positive impact on student achievement, and we must invest in them.”

Rhode Island teachers and administrators have shown their appreciation for these programs by naming seven school librarians as Teacher of the Year (out of 36 districts) between 2014 and 2015: Burrillville, Coventry, Cranston, East Greenwich, Narragansett, Newport, and North Kingstown.

“School librarians play a vital role within their communities,”  says Sarah Hunicke of Portsmouth High School, president of School Librarians of Rhode Island (SLRI). “From classroom research project support to personalized reading suggestions, librarians are trained educators with the knowledge and skills to teach students how to best approach a research question, find reliable sources of information, and present findings ethically. We offer academic programs that enrich every single student at a school, helping them to become lifelong learners.”

(release from SLRI)