Dear MASL Members/Library Community,
The Maine Department of Education has released a request for public comment on the ESSA Consolidated State Plan.
The Maine Association of School Librarians would like to see more language that reflects the work of school libraries. Here is the commentary we sent in behalf of school libraries:
The Maine Association of School Libraries (MASL) recognizes the efforts made by the Maine Department of Education and Consolidated Application Committee to create this robust plan. School libraries are an important vehicle for creating a personalized, well-rounded and rigorous learning environment for all students as they prepare for the future in a changing world. Our Board requests that more language be included in the plan regarding the curriculum areas that school libraries support, namely: digital literacy and information literacy.
Due to the geographic and socio-economic situation in our state it is imperative that we have “coordinated and equitable” access to resources and educational opportunties such as are provided by school libraries.
We encourage all members of library community to review the state plan send their comments to [ESSA.DOE@maine.gov]. All comments are due by March 30th.
For further information, you can also review the state plans of New Jersey [http://www.state.nj.us/education/ESSA/plan/plan.pdf] and North Carolina [http://www.dpi.state.nc.us/docs/succeeds/draft-state-plan.pdf] to see how school libraries have been included. Please also see the AASL position statement on effective school library programs which directly references language in the ESSA statute [http://essa.aasl.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/ESSAMessageCards.pdf].
Thank you for all of your efforts for Maine’s Students,