The Role of Librarians in the Twenty First Century

This follows on from a piece I put on the blog here on 19th June about how technology was changing the role of libraries in schools.

This is a series of short articles from the New York Times looking at varied perspectives on the fact that in the US as schools and education authorities look for ways to cut budgets many are cutting librarian roles:

New York Times: Room for Debate on School Librarians

Of all the pieces, the fifth one really resonated with me for all that the librarian can and should be in a modern school library. Others also allude to the fact that as the world has changed, the needs from education have changed. As we place greater emphasis on preparation for lifelong learning, the role of the librarian becomes, i believe, even more critical. The library/ learning resource centre is the place where a child begins to take their own tentative steps to self ownership and mastery of digital and paper knowledge. It’s the place where they are not told what to read when, what to think about it or how to prove the knowledge arising out of their reading. It’s a place where they can be empowered.

It’s why I believe that whatever the financial constraints, libraries should never be neglected – rather they should be placed at the very centre of school life.

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