Three representatives from NZEI joined our meeting to discuss the issue of pay parity and how that affects us as school librarians. We found the session both informative and enlightening. It was heartening to learn that School Librarians pay equity claim will be assessed separately and following on from the school Admin staff as our role includes a pastoral element with personal contact and teaching of students and a direct impact on their learning. During Term 1 2018, SLANZA will hold regional meetings to discuss pay equity. Importantly, we need to encourage our members to think about recording the skill sets they are using throughout the day, NZEI will provide a form for this. We need everyone’s contribution and support to build a strong case for our claim. In addition, we will run a Google+ SLANZA community discussion on pay equity early next year.
We are excited about the Professional Development we are offering our members. When the Google+ community formed, we had 85 initial participants - we now have 192. Fifty members signed up for our latest online course, Active Collection Development. We are fully committed to offering further opportunities of learning in 2018, which will include new Connected online learning modules, new Google+ discussions, our Collected magazine, regional professional development, as well as fee-free Open Polytechnic courses.
Watch out for a survey that will be coming to your inbox. This is a combined venture between National Library, LIANZA and SLANZA. We hope to gather data on the number of school libraries, staffing hours, funding, and their function. This survey will be forwarded to members of the library team and the principal, it is important we have different perspectives to build an extensive picture of how our school libraries are working. Please support this initiative.
Speaking of surveys, soon it will be time for our annual SLANZA Reading survey. By sharing your most issued book, most favoured author and most popular series from your library, it builds a popular reading list of New Zealand children and teenage reading.
We are trialling Regional Conferences for the next two years before our National Conference in 2020. Dunedin is the venue next year on the weekend of 29-30 September 2018, the first weekend of the school holidays. They have amazing ideas, speakers and plans. The Otago SLANZA Committee are hoping to keep the cost less than $150.00. Put a circle around the date and add it to the 2018 school budget.
At our meeting, we discussed our vision statement, strategic plan and our annual action plan. We are also looking at a new Policies and Procedures Manual. These documents set a firm foundation for our core values, focus our priorities and help transition new National Executive members. We are currently looking at updating the website too. We will keep you informed as these take shape.
Lastly, we welcomed Jay Shaw as Southland rep onto NE and Melanie McVeigh as the SLANZA Administrator. Sadly we also had to farewell the stunning Bridget Schaumann. Bridget has served over 10 years on SLANZA NE, she has a wealth of knowledge, is fully passionate about the power of SLANZA and is a huge believer in advocating and demanding the best from school libraries. She has given fully to SLANZA and we will miss her advice, her courage, her energy and even her corrective smile! We wish you all the best and we thank you.
Have a great Christmas break, enjoy the sun, your families and many good books. On behalf of SLANZA we thank you for all you do for school libraries, we acknowledge your hard work on behalf of your students, your school and our organisation.