The Priorities of a Teacher Librarian

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March 29, 2013 by patriciawhite84

I spent a lot of time trying to figure out what I thought the priorities of a teacher librarian should be. Initially, the obvious thought was student learning. Lamb (2011), outlines that in order for a teacher librarian “to impact student learning, they must emphasize inquiry learning, not clerical duties”(p.31). However the quality of student learning comes down to the quality of the teaching experience, which rest with the teacher librarian. Therefore I shifted my main priority to the teacher librarian. In order to “empower others in the school community to become lifelong learners” the teacher librarian must be committed to continual professional development (Australian Library and Information Association [ALIA] & Australian School Library Association [ASLA], 2004).

Attending industry conferences is only one avenue. Valenza (2010) identifies several ways that a teacher librarian can actively participate and seek out professional development, including social and professional networking tools, reading supportive literature and blog journals, using online curating devices and listening to industry webcasts. Knowing that the teacher librarian is on top, I then stacked up the many other aspects of the role, looking at what I believed were their priorities as an educator and as an administrator.



Australian Library and Information Association & Australian School Library Association. (2004). Standards of professional excellence for teacher librarians [website]. Retrieved from http://www.asla.

Lamb, A. (2011). Bursting with potential: Mixing a media specialist’s palette. Tech Trends: Linking Research & Practice to Improve Learning, 55(4), 27-36.

Valenza, J. (2010, December 3). A revised manifesto. In School Library Journal. Retrieved from

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