a recipient of a 2019 MA Super Librarian Award.
When we meet with our local legislators, I speak about what I know, school libraries. I am able to advocate for school libraries. My experiences and membership with the MSLA, and the MTA Library task force are very valuable when advocating for school libraries. When we talk about school funding, I can talk about how many schools do not have librarians, or lack budgets, or have limited student access to the library due to testing, and more. I can talk about how we support English Language Learners and students with special needs. The trick is - keep it short and simple!
For librarians and para librarians who want to learn more about local politics (isn’t it all local), I recommend you become a PAL. Our voices are often lost, there are so many educational issues that seem to take priority, yet we work with all students and staff, and have a unique perspective on educational policies. We know how to do the research, we are good at elevator speeches, and we advocate for our students and staff and need to be at the table. Also, you’ll meet some really nice people who get what we do!