SLANZA is pleased to provide an update on what we have been working on with regards to the remuneration and working conditions our members currently work under. We wish to inform our members that as of September 2018, NZEI notified the Ministry of Education of a pay equity claim on behalf of school librarians and library assistants as part of a wider school support staff pay equity claim. We have supplied statistics and information to NZEI since then, including a phone interview. NZEI are attending our next National Executive meeting in Wellington on 30-31 March to update us on the progress on this claim.
SLANZA National Executive also contributed to LIANZA’s oral submission to the select committee on the Equal Pay Amendments Bill. You may read our comments to LIANZA’s oral submission below.
We are extremely fortunate to have two organisations advocating for school librarians in the pay equity campaign. It reinforces SLANZA’s concerns relating to our poor pay rates and working conditions. This gives us a stronger presence and we look forward to working with both NZEI and LIANZA to support their submissions.
SLANZA Comments to LIANZA Equal Pay Oral Submission
Thank you for the opportunity of providing feedback on the Equal Pay Submission LIANZA is presenting on Wednesday 6th March 2019.
Importance of School Libraries
The school library is fundamental for students and staff to have equitable access to quality resources, skills and support. All schools should have a well-resourced library staffed by a specialist librarian to support the teaching and learning needed for student success. Research in New Zealand and in many overseas studies shows that having a well-resourced school library staffed by a professional librarian increases literacy levels and student achievement (National Literacy Trust, 2018). School libraries give equal access to all students, regardless of community services and financial situations.
Importance of School Librarians
Our SLANZA members are passionate and dedicated specialists who upskill themselves outside of work hours through their SLANZA community and professional development opportunities, with a proportion studying at tertiary level for diplomas right through to Bachelor degrees. Many library assistants are on minimum wage with part-time hours, yet this dedication shows a commitment to the profession and student learning and they deliver real benefit to their students and organisation.
We would also like to call attention to the widespread pay rate of specialist librarians managing school libraries who struggle to attain the living wage. With school roles of up to thousands of students, these school librarians provide information literacy skills, encourage a love of reading and learning, provide access to quality information sources, both print and digital to staff and students, provide ICT instruction for staff and students, provide a physical space where students can feel comfortable, safe and valued, are responsible for the library budget, and may supervise library assistants and/or volunteers. This substantial and complex skill set list is expected of school librarians at secondary level, with primary school libraries delivering many of these services. Considering the skill sets involved, remuneration is inadequate.
SLANZA considers the role of the school librarian as unique in comparison to other library positions. School librarians see the same students for a number of years and must provide a more holistic approach, building relationships and trust during a demanding age period. Student care is an underestimated skill set that school librarians practice daily.
There are a number of challenges facing schools and school libraries including pressures of the funding model, lack of space, staffing and budgets. There is a real fear for job security and hours, where libraries aren’t recognised as vital to student achievement, where school library staff aren’t valued as information experts with the skills and knowledge to encourage, care for and teach students, where budgets get trimmed to cater for other school needs, where libraries are being used as classrooms, where hours are cut so much that they find it increasingly difficult to make a difference to their students’ learning.
SLANZA would like to see legislation that every school has a well-sourced library, staffed by a specialist librarian with a sufficient ring-fenced budget for the hours and resources to support learning.
Significantly, ninety-seven per cent of our members are female (November 2018).
As of September 2018, NZEI notified the Ministry of Education of a pay equity claim on behalf of school librarians and library assistants as part of a wider school support staff pay equity claim. We have supplied statistics and information to NZEI since then, and I had a phone interview. We have invited NZEI to our next National Executive meeting in Wellington on 30-31 March to update us on the progress on this claim.
The next SLANZA Connected Librarians Online module is about to open for registration.
Module #11 - Student Wellbeing and Behaviour, especially related to the school librarian role
Registration opens Thursday 7 March 2019 and closes Sunday 10 March 2019
The course runs from Monday 11 March until Sunday 31 March.
Our first SLANZA Google+ discussion of the year is up and running on Google+.
We are looking at trying things outside our comfort zones.
Please join the conversation and share your successes and failures., so we can spread our knowledge and learning.
Our G+ discussions are designed to be slow, to allow time for deep thought and to reflect on our practices. Over two weeks there will be weekly readings and a chance to share and discuss. You can dip in and out of the discussion as time allows you, and participate as much or as little as you wish.
You must be a member of SLANZA to take part in this discussion as well as belonging to SLANZA’s Google+ Community.
This will be the last time we use Google+ as it will be shutting down after this and we will find another platform to enable these exchanges.
For the SLANZA PD Team
As we race into February, now is the time we start to think about putting together our first copy of Collected for the year. Collected is SLANZA's e-magazine - the voice of our people. We encourage you to share your story, whatever it may be, from why you got into librarianship, your trials and tribulations, your new and unusual ideas, a programme that worked or is working particularly well, your take of some professional development that you attended or read about, to anything that you think may be valuable to your peers. Submissions for Collected #24 will be opening soon, so now its the time to start thinking about what you might like to contribute this year.
Ngā mihi o te tau hou. We hope your summer was full of great reads and plenty of relaxation. As some schools start back this week at the peak of a heat wave, we here at SLANZA are also gearing up for a great year!
The summer reading survey is out now, and worth a look! Head on over to http://www.slanza.org.nz/reading-survey.html and check it out.
Invoices will be out next week, and your regional rep will also be in touch shortly. Also feel free to get in touch with us sooner if you have any questions.
Don't forget to put the Waikato/Bay of Plenty Regional Conference dates in your calendar now - Friday 27th September - Sunday 29th September! This will be a very socially oriented conference where not only you will get the chance to explore the Waikato and learn about it's rich history, but will also have the chance to attend some great PD.
It's time for the last SLANZA Google+ discussion of the year.
We will be looking at and sharing our ideas of fun library activities, great library displays and hopefully delve in to using escape room activities in the library.
Join us and share and find out what others have been up to.
You must be a member of SLANZA to take part in this discussion as well as belonging to SLANZA’s Google+ Community.
The National Executive met after the Otago Regional Conference in Dunedin. Below is a summary of some of the discussions covered at the meeting. This communique is to keep members up-to-date with the work being done on their behalf by the National Executive.
National Executive team
National Executive would like to welcome two new members to our team. Long-standing Representative, Auckland’s Trish Webster has made way for Sharon Jackson and Central’s Steph Gibbons has been replaced by Sasha Eastwood-Bennitt. The fluidity of movement into and out of the NE is a natural response to member needs. On one hand, we are saddened by the loss of the knowledge and skills leaving our team, yet, we feel empowered by the views and energy that new representatives bring in. We are fortunate to harness knowledge and experience from a wide range of members, and we would like to acknowledge and thank Bridget Schaumann and Rosalba Finnerty in particular for their continuing guidance and support.
Statements and Policies
As a National Executive, we are always working on improving our systems and practices. We greatly appreciate your input in forming our updated Vision and Mission Statements - the biggest change we made from your feedback was a change from ‘school librarians’ to ‘school library staff’ which we agree, is a more inclusive term. These are the new statements:
SLANZA will empower and support school library staff, and strengthen and promote school libraries in Aotearoa New Zealand.
SLANZA provides community, guidance and professional development on library practice and programmes for school library staff in Aotearoa New Zealand while reflecting the principles of the Treaty of Waitangi.
Further to these statements, we have also been developing policies relating to Te Tiriti o Waitangi - The Treaty of Waitangi as well as one on Equity.
Total membership for 2018 is 592 members, down 5% from 2017.
If you haven’t visited the SLANZA website recently, do have a look. We’ve been quietly working away at refreshing the look and content.
We would like to acknowledge the phenomenal effort that went into organising and running the SLANZA Otago Regional Conference. The Conference Committee ensured that, even though it was a regional conference, the calibre of professional development on offer was exceptional while the fellowship was marvellous. Our sincere gratitude goes to the Otago team who made this event possible.
It was announced at the conference that, next year, we will hold another regional conference, this time organised by the Waikato / Bay of Plenty region and based in Cambridge. Add the event to your budget and note it on your calendar, Friday 27 September to Sunday 29 September 2019.
Thank you to all the members who have submitted articles for Collected magazine. The theme is ‘Encouraging Readers’, although we will be treated to other articles of interest as well as book reviews and business member submissions. Currently in the editing stage, the twenty-third issue of Collected will be out soon.
This will be the last issue by our editor Greig Daniels who has stepped down after four years as editor. With Greig’s skilful editing and writing,Collected has developed into a quality publication and we thank him sincerely for his tireless work and dedication. We are excited to announce that Melanie McVeigh, our administration officer, has worked alongside Greig with this issue and will take over the role next year.
Congratulations to all those members who completed the Term 3 Connected online learning module. The topic was Student Care and the Role of Librarians and proved to be a popular choice for learning new techniques and support practices for our students. Connected online courses are free for SLANZA members and are another option for school library staff to extend our learning. Watch out for the next module in Term 1.
The discussion topic, Fun Library Activities, is due to start next week. We will be looking at stimulating activities we do in our libraries to have fun with our students and staff. Don’t forget you need to be a SLANZA member to participate.
Open Polytechnic Courses
The Open Polytechnic are undergoing a transformational change with a strong learner-centred focus. Their new courses in Library and Information Studies are really enticing with updated, relevant content and flexible, collaborative learning. SLANZA is strongly committed to raising the professional standing of school library staff, and we are grateful to Open Polytechnic for continuing to offer SLANZA members fee free study opportunities on two Level 6 papers.
We encourage members to take advantage of this amazing study opportunity.
NZEI Pay Equity Claim
We are supporting NZEI with their pay equity claim for school librarians and library assistants. Achieving pay equity with similar non-female dominant professions will not be a quick or simple task, however, the information gained from the Google+ Community Pay Equity PD, earlier this year, where members collaborated to create a comprehensive database of skills, roles and responsibilities, will assist our cause.
SLANZA National Executive would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your ongoing commitment to SLANZA and wish you all a great term 4. We will continue to work on your behalf and ensure that the voice of school libraries from all over the country are heard.
All Books NZ
All Books New Zealand specialises in the supply of books, magazines, educational and reference publications, DVDs and CDs to libraries, school libraries and into tertiary and specialist institutions throughout New Zealand. Protect your collection with All Books range of industry tested covering products and solutions, or let us assist you by accessing our shelf ready services. With our competitive discounts on local and imported titles you have access to purchase our products and services all on account.
For further information please free to call us on 0800 255 257, visit our website, www.allbooks.nz and to register simply email us at email@example.com
Library Tech NZ
Established in 2016, LibraryTech NZ formed to provide not only exceptional library products, but also a high level of local customer service.
In addition to library self-service systems (self-check-out/in, book return/sorting and RFID systems) which are designed and assembled in New Zealand. We also offer professional library products from strong international partners, such as library furniture from BCI Denmark, book security systems from Dialoc ID Netherlands and book protection film from Pelloplast Finland etc.
LibraryTech NZ is proud to be involved in the library market and aiming to be the leading technology supplier to libraries in New Zealand. For more information, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call on 0800 556 255, (+64) 07 949 4110. We are located at 60 Ulster Street, Hamilton 3200, New Zealand or online at www.librarytech.co.nz
SLANZA encourages and rewards excellence in school libraries, recognising the success and achievement of those working in and with school libraries, with a series of annual awards. Therefore the Slanza National Executive would like to call for nominations for our Awards of Excellence, and Life Membership to be presented at the upcoming Otago Regional Conference in September at Otago Girls’ High School, Dunedin. Further information about the criteria for each award can be found on the Awards page on the SLANZA website.
As always, the awards are presented at the discretion of the Awards Committee.
Please send all nominations with all the required documentation to email@example.com no later than Monday 27th August 2018.