My expectations coming in to this subject was of building a library collection with resources from all different formats. I have experience in the library field as a library assistant, so I was looking at this subject as a library assistant and not from a leadership point of view. What I didn’t count on was the amount of effort that a teacher-librarian (TL) must do in their role behind the scenes.
As I progressed through the subject I was able to gain a deeper appreciation for the leadership role of a TL. This was evident while working on the Collection Development Policy (CDP), I found this particularly challenging because I didn’t have access to an original CDP and I hit the ground running by developing my own, needless to say I felt very overwhelmed and I seemed to be in doubt of my newly acquired knowledge. However, the forums were very useful and cleared a lot of hesitation in my mind. My biggest hurtle was adapting myself around online learning. This is my first subject in my journey to become a TL, and I was side-blinded by the amount of effort, time and lack of social life this subject was going to take up.
The content that has been covered in the subject is a fantastic foundation for starting off as a TL. I have a greater understanding about the tools, policies and procedures used in developing a collection policy. I had very little knowledge about how to evaluate a collection, as a library assistant it is practical approach. This subject gave me a deeper understanding of evaluation tools like collection mapping. I look forward to building on this and the need to organise a committee to write a CDP.
What I have learned is that a school library collection is to support the school curriculum and the school community by providing a value and scope to the collection. In the assignment I wrote: That students and staff utilise our resources and opportunities in order to become effective communicators, critical thinkers, and productive citizens who are ethical users and creators of information. This subject has given me a deeper understanding of what to purchase for a collection, and with the content that has been covered I believe I have a good chance of being able to maintain a collection that satisfies this vision.
The TL, must take on a leadership role to manage the library collection, and by that, the TL must have a clear understanding of the purpose and goals of the collection in order to meet the needs of the stakeholders.
I now feel that I have a sound grounding in these areas and would be able to successfully implement them, as well as develop assessment of a collection and subsequent policies and procedures, which address the aims and needs of both the library and school as a whole.
Bishop, K. (2007). Community analysis and needs assessment. In The collection program in schools: concepts, practices and information sources. (4th ed.). p19-24. Westport, Conn. : Libraries Unlimited.
Gregory, V.L.(2011). Collection development and management for 21st century library collections. New York, NY: Neal-Schuman Publishers, Inc.