The GLMA ESSA Ad Hoc Committee has worked tirelessly to craft policy recommendations and statements. These recommendations have been presented to the chair or each of the Georgia Department of Educations’s ESSA Working Committees and to Richard Woods, State School Superintendent. Please find the complete recommendation here.
GLMA would like to thank John Chastrka of EveryLibrary for his support and assistance in this process. Our work is not over, please stay tuned for additional information regarding the public comment period.
GLMA ESSA AD HOC COMMITTEE MEMBERS
*John Chrastka – EveryLibrary
The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) reauthorizes the 50-year-old Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), and replaces No Child Left Behind, the nation’s national education law. This law now makes school library programs and school librarian positions a part of federal education policy and law. This restores our program and positions in several Titles. ESSA includes language for “effective school library programs” in the provisions of Titles I, II, and IV. As part of these provisions, the “local educational agency” is authorized to include in their plans how they will develop “effective school library programs”. ESSA authorizes but does not require states to use funds to assist school districts in maintaining effective school library programs or certified school librarians. As a result, it is critical that all school librarians fully understand ESSA and its potential impact on our profession.
What can you do?
- Speak up about the positive impact you have on student success.
- Share specifics about what you do daily to impact school success with anyone and everyone.
- Ask decision makers to fund certified media specialists and sustain school library media programs.
- Attend listening tours or stakeholder feedback sessions held near you. Go to the sessions prepared to make a public statement about effective school library media programs and their positive impact on student achievement.
What is GLMA doing?
- Recommending language in legislation about school libraries by working with legislators and their staff.
- Pushing to participate as the state develops its plan.
- Maintaining strong relationships with other state education organizations and stakeholders.
- Educating members of the education community and other stakeholders about advocacy efforts and strategies.
Together we can shape the future for school librarians across the state of Georgia! This is a rare golden opportunity to bring libraries back into the conversation about what constitutes a quality education. Don’t let the window close without adding your voice to this very important issue. Speaking up now could change the academic lives of every student in the state! We need you now more than ever to be engaged.