BHS Library Media Center

Program Review: January 2014

Goals of the BHS Library Media Center

  • To instill in students a desire to be life-long readers and to have the ability to search for answers independently.
  • To acquire and maintain a balanced collection of LMC resources, representing a wide range of subjects, levels of difficulty, and formats.
  • To support the curriculum of Bethel High School and the teachers' classroom programs by providing necessary materials and appropriate guidance and instruction to students.
  • To provide a facility that functions as the information center of the school.
  • To provide leadership, instruction, and assistance in the use of information technology and resources.

Functions of the LMC: How should these be ranked in order of importance?

  1. research/information literacy support & instruction
  2. technology support for both teachers & students
  3. supervision of students (Learning Lab, etc.)
  4. scheduling of school resources (computer labs)
  5. maintaining IT resources
  6. literacy promotion & collection development

TRAILS data: Information Literacy at BHS

What is TRAILS?

"TRAILS is a knowledge assessment with multiple-choice questions targeting a variety of information literacy skills based on 3rd, 6th, 9th, and 12th grade standards. The assessment items are based on the American Association of School Librarians' Standards for the 21st-Century Learner and those from the Common Core State Standards Initiative" (Kent State University).

TRAILS assesses student skills in the following areas:

  1. Developing a topic for research
  2. Identifying potential sources
  3. Developing, using, and revising search strategies
  4. Evaluating sources and information
  5. Recognizing how to use information responsibly, ethically, and legally

The Library Media program has administered the TRAILS-9 and TRAILS-12 assessments to the Class of 2017 and the Class of 2014 this school year. The baseline data from this assessment has shown areas of deficit for this year's senior class in the area of using information responsibly, ethically, and legally. In response to this, the Digital English class now includes a unit on Digital Citizenship that teaches students about issues of plagiarism, copyright, and intellectual property.

The Class of 2017 seems to show the most area of need in developing a topic for research. This was also true for last year's TRAILS-9 assessment of the Class of 2016. In response to this deficit area, the library media program will be working directly with the teachers in the 10th grade Social Studies PLC to design instruction relating to the research project in the Modern World History course accordingly.

The TRAILS is also being administered at various levels throughout the school district. The Library Media Specialist PLC will be utilizing this data to refine current instruction and revise the information literacy curriculum expectations at all levels going forward.

Ideas for the future...

The LMC is constantly changing and evolving to meet the needs of the school community. Here are some of the plans for the future that are in the works:

  • carpet for high-traffic entryway
  • vinyl quotes on wall space
  • additional artwork/murals (LMC entrance)
  • weed non-fiction and reference sections
  • purchase high-interest non-fiction print selections
  • use GAFE student emails consistently across systems and courses for communication (i.e., Naviance, Destiny, PowerSchool, etc.)
  • require student usage of Student ID for cafeteria & book checkout (discussion point: students should use IDs throughout the school building, but I hate to be the only one enforcing this as I just want to get students to read and restricting book access would be detrimental to LMC program)
  • "genrify"/continue genre labeling of fiction collection to increase interest and visibility
  • develop e-book collection (Follett platform -- to do this we need IT to update to latest version of Destiny)
  • add Lexile level ranges to Destiny catalog records
  • increase seating and charging stations
  • inventory remaining print collection
  • weed VHS/DVD & increase streaming video collection
  • develop district-wide information literacy standards/curriculum

Issues & Challenges

  • IT communication -- It can be challenging to get answers and attention from IT in regard to specific problems. (Examples: server slow-down, iPad updating, user accounts, updating software in a timely manner, etc.) Is there a way to explore using the IT helpdesk software again?
  • Asset Manager -- This program was purchased as a way to help streamline IT and AV equipment and provide P.O. information/history for Central Office. Too much of the maintenance of this system is falling on the media specialists and paraprofessionals throughout the district. There has been little communication about proper utilization, implementation, and management of the software and its contents.
  • Physical Space Limitations -- With little staging/storage area, the LMC can be a challenging space to maintain. I would love to discuss ideas of how we could improve the current space in regard to issues such as access to electric outlets for charging BYOT and district-issued devices, arrangement of bookcases to improve collection use while maintaining sight lines, and workspace for larger projects to be completed during the school year (while school is in session it can be difficult to work on collection-based projects).
  • Supervision of Students -- All teachers should take ownership of and interest in this community space. Expectations of Learning Lab teachers should be reaffirmed, especially in regard to emergencies and knowing where all students are going.
  • Feeling Overwhelmed -- I will admit that this year has posed a number of challenges in regard to prioritizing issues and clarifying the role of the LMS in the school community. Keeping up with the changes in curriculum, the pacing of research assignments throughout the school year, technology needs (both those of teachers and students as users and those of maintaining equipment within the district), the new evaluation system and its repercussions among the faculty members, and other issues have made it more challenging to facilitate and develop the LMC program this year.