As you will already know from our communication regarding the meeting with the National Library, the SLANZA National Executive met last weekend and below is a summary of some of the areas of discussion. These are not full minutes but rather some of the discussion points to keep you up-to-date with the work being done on your behalf by the National Executive.
Our membership numbers remain strong with an increase to date compared with last year of new and renewed memberships. The regions are all working hard to increase members as there is power in numbers – the greater the number of fully paid up members means the more work SLANZA can do to support libraries and student outcomes. Talk to the people in your own personal learning networks and encourage them to consider a SLANZA membership.
National Executive Meetings: Online or Face-to- Face
Last year the NE trialled an online meeting using Google hangouts and although this can come with technical issues, it was still a useful and productive way to hold a meeting. Because face-to-face meetings can be costly (flights and accommodation), it was decided that NE would hold just two face-to-face meetings in 2015 and the third meeting would be online (July). We hope this will mean that the work of the Executive can be done but in a more cost effective way, enabling us to channel funds directly into projects for our members.
Book Protection Products
We are pleased to announce that once again Book Protection Products have agreed to sponsor SLANZA professional development in 2015 for $5000. BPP have done this for many years and SLANZA values and appreciates this ongoing support that they offer our members and school libraries. As the upcoming conference is our major professional development for 2015, it was decided to use these funds to sponsor members from all the regions to attend conference. We are very aware that in many cases schools will not fund library staff to attend conference and we hope to make conference accessible to some of these members. Watch for more information from your region on how you can apply for this sponsorship money to attend conference.
Ministry of Education and the Future of School Libraries
Karen Clarke shared a summary of her research into recent Ministry of Education documents and their position on school libraries. SLANZA is staying well informed with the MOE directions and ensures that we not only advocate for the school library and librarian, but also align our directions with current education thinking. If you are interested in knowing more in this area, below are some links where you might like to begin some reading.
Future Focused Learning Report
Digital Hubs in Schools
Modern Learning Environments
National Library and the Services to Schools Transformation Programme
The outcome and information of this discussion has already been covered in an earlier communication. If you haven’t received this please click here.
The next issue of Collected is due for publication early next term. The theme will focus on reading and submissions for this issue will close on April 2nd. Articles on topics other than reading are also welcome and please don’t be shy about writing an article for Collected – we know there are some great things happening in school libraries all over the country and Collected is one way we can share and celebrate the work being done.
As members of SLANZA you will be the first to receive your copy of Collected via an email link. It is important that we show how much we value your membership and Collected will be available for general release a few weeks later.
Finance and Treasurer’s Report
The financial report was presented and we are currently on budget for the 2015 financial year. We have received some income from downloads of full text articles from Collected and $700 from the Open Polytechnic for an article submitted by Karen Clarke and Bridget Schaumann who have kindly donated this income back to SLANZA. The National Executive are also considering a variety of other avenues for income which we hope will support initiatives such as Collected and our online professional development so these initiatives can continue to be free of charge to members.
Conference: From the Ground Up: Growing Libraries for the Future
The conference is shaping up well and we look forward to this event in September. For current information regarding conference, click here.
The National Executive had a lengthy discussion about the future conference in 2017 and the possibilities of alternative ways of providing professional development. Conferences are expensive, time consuming for our regional volunteers and a major undertaking for a small organisation. Because the future of a national conference and the possible alternatives is a major change for our organization, we intend to ask you, our members about how we can best provide professional development. After our conference later this year we will survey our membership and ask for your feedback before we move forward on this issue.
President, Immediate Past President and President Elect
Miriam Tuohy is currently our President Elect and will take over from Bridget Schaumann in July (the end of Bridget’s two year term.) Because the AGM will not be held until the conference in September, this will be a ‘soft’ handover in July and the reins will pass over officially at the AGM in September. A new President Elect will be confirmed at the AGM – watch for more information on nominations for this position.
Online Professional Development
Our very successful (and free to members) online professional development is about to get underway again. The format for this will change slightly. Rather than enrolling for all modules as a package, members will be able to just select individual modules to complete. We will let you know when enrolments open as NE are currently looking at offering this via a new learning platform in order to improve and streamline this service.
SLANZA Google+ Community
SLANZA is about to launch a Google+ community where members can “share resources and to join in discussions relating to the practical day-to-day running of a school library. We hope that members will share their knowledge and skills with each other and provide encouragement and help to those with questions.”
This community will launch in the beginning of Term 2 where your request to join will be processed if you are a member of SLANZA. If you don’t currently belong to Google+, make it your holiday task to set up your Google+ account. If you are new to Google+ or Google products, click here for some helpful guidance.
Thanks everyone and congratulations for making it to the end of this very long update on the work of your National Executive team. As you can see by the scale of issues covered over the weekend, we are working hard on behalf of you all but also value hearing from you. Please don’t hesitate to contact your regional representative with any issues or concerns that SLANZA may be able to assist you with.
National Executive Communications