Approved October 17, 2015
The New Jersey Association of School Librarians advocates for high standards for school librarianship and school library media programs in the public, private and parochial schools in New Jersey. NJASL’s mission is to ensure that students and staff become critical thinkers, effective and ethical users and producers of information in support of the NJ State Core Content Curriculum Standards, Common Core State Standards Initiative, and American Association of School Librarians (AASL) Standards for the 21st Century Learner. The Association fosters excellence in the school library media program by providing school library media specialists with educational opportunities and current information.
That every student in every school in New Jersey is served by a certified full time School Library Media Specialist. All students are empowered to achieve college and career readiness through active, collaborative library programs guided by credentialed School Library Media Specialists who are recognized as educational leaders and indispensable resources in their school communities.
- Reading is essential for lifelong learning.
- Individuals have a right to access ideas and information.
- NJASL is committed to excellence in school library media programs.
- Teaching students how to learn from information in a variety of formats and platforms is the central role of school library media specialists.
- All students, regardless of community demographics, achieve greater academic success when effective school library media programs are integrated into their learning.
- Effective school library media programs are competently staffed by credentialed School Library Media Specialists, readily accessible, and adequately funded.
- Collaboration with teachers, administrators, parents, legislators, affiliate organizations, and peers is essential to the effectiveness of school library media programs and to the overall success of students’ educational goals.
- Continuing professional development is essential to the effectiveness of school librarians, as it is for all professionals.
- Membership in NJASL is an essential component of every school librarian’s continuing professional practice.
- NJASL welcomes the membership of all staff functioning in school libraries, as well as others interested in excellence in school librarianship.
- NJASL is committed to diversity in the profession and in the organization.
- NJASL values transparency in its relationships with members; we foster open discussion and active participation among our members.
1. Improve the Fiscal Health of the Organization
Analyze data from prior budgets and develop a long-range (3 year) strategic plan to restore budget health.
GOAL:Reduce expenditures and increase revenue with the intent of achieving solvency.
- Create a Strategic Financial Committee to:
- Create a multi-year strategic plan
- Increase total revenue
- Increase sponsorships
- Increase non-conference related sponsorships
- Plan for a balanced budget within three (3) years
- Create and maintain sustainable membership goals using membership data
- Train the board as a 501c(3) organization
- Utilize grant opportunities to fund executive board learning activities on our fiduciary roles and responsibilities
2. Increase Professional Development Opportunities
Draw on the collective intelligence of our members and maintain excellence among school library media specialists by providing educational opportunities and current information.
GOAL: Increase meaningful and beneficial professional development opportunities throughout the year that include members at all levels.
- Facilitate webinars and other online approaches for professional development
- Collaborate with administrators, supervisors and principals to provide meaningful professional development
- Use our connections with county groups to support professional development opportunities and outreach
- Redefine our professional identity as a state organization
- Collaborate whenever possible with similar organizations
3. External Outreach for Advocacy and Networking
Create dynamic opportunities to collaborate and network with other similar organizations and stakeholders that include public librarians, teachers, principals, supervisors, administrators, legislators and higher education programs that support certified librarians and school library programs in NJ.
GOAL: Work and collaborate with other organizations to support and create opportunities to network, build membership and increase our standing in the educational community.
- Use LibraryLinkNJ’s $1,500 grant for continuing education
- Create a dialogue with higher education and administrators, supervisors and principals for networking opportunities
- Create dialogue with parent groups (PTOs) to support library media programs
- Gather sample school library media specialist evaluation rubrics and student growth objectives and post these examples to the NJASL website.
- Connect with other organizations to provide webinars.
- Continue working with DOE on evaluation of school library media programs’ impact on students and school communities and on SLMS evaluations
4.Outreach to Decision Makers, Professional Partnerships, and NJASL County Affiliates
Advocate for the critical role of the SLMS in technology integration and information literacy skills for students, school staff and all administrators.
GOAL: To advocate with policymakers, education organizations, and other stakeholders to promote the value of every school having a credentialed School Library Media Specialist to deliver effective school library media programs
- Establish better connections with universities and graduates to help develop leadership training for our members and to promote NJASL to their communities.
- Increase school/public/academic library cross collaboration opportunities that support student learning.
- Protect jobs by communicating value to decision makers: boards of education, PTO/PTAs, superintendents’ & principals’ associations, and educational technology associations.
- Work with NJEA, NJLA and other library and educational advocacy associations to ensure that SLMS’s are included in their advocacy.
- Identify and advocate for urban, underfunded and understaffed school libraries.
- Redefine and develop NJASL’s County Affiliate program.