Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Library Girl's Hiring Advice

Library Girl with cape, books and iPad
Image of  Library Girl
from Library Girl Blog

Jennifer LaGarde is the Library Girl behind the cape. Her open letter to principals, recently posted on her blog, includes some good advice and food for thought. The hiring process for classroom teachers can be unambiguous for administrators at all levels. Many principals have probably been a classroom teacher but it is less likely they have been a library media specialist. Combine that with the shortage of certified teacher librarians in the hiring pool and you can begin to understand the challenges that these administrators face.

Jennifer's open letter includes a list of six dispositions to look for in a potential library media specialist. Sometimes hiring the suitable person for the position involves a teacher currently occupied with the licensing process. As Wisconsin continues to face a shortage of certified professionals, we are looking at ways to support struggling districts seeking to locate the right person to be their "awesome librarian." This summer DPI and WEMTA are collaborating to develop resources for the start of the upcoming school year. These resources will help define what a teacher librarian does and demonstrate how one's presence improves student learning.

Library Girl also includes examples of interview questions. The good news is that the open letter doesn't stop with the hiring process. She shares information about the kind of support needed for that amazing librarian to develop an awesome library program. Check out the Adventures of Library Girl to find great information, and please share the open letter with school administrators and others involved in district hiring processes.

Written by:

Nancy Anderson, Resources for Libraries and Lifelong Learning