News & Views

Morris County School Media Association

MCSMA General Meeting - Preconference Trial Runs

Thursday, Oct. 17th, 4-6pm

449 Halsey Road

Parsippany-Troy Hills, NJ

Join us for the first meeting of the 2019-2020 school year!

If you or your colleagues are presenting at this year's NJASL Conference, consider signing up to try out your presentation with us first! Please complete the registration form here to present.

If you are not presenting, get a sneak peak at some great NJASL presentations and network with school librarians from all over Morris County!

This event is free for members and $10 for nonmembers.

From the President:

Hello! Welcome to a great school year filled with new goals, insights, and enthusiasm. I hope that the 2019-20 year provides you enjoyable experiences with students and colleagues because you earn it. We all appreciate the chance to rejuvenate over the summer, it is a vital element of the meaningful work that we do. As we get this new year underway I wish everyone success.

For those of you new to the organization MCSMA is the most active local librarians organization in the state. We provide professional education, leadership and collaboration to continually strengthen school librarians and the communities we serve.

This year we are looking forward to celebrating our members. In conjunction with NJASL we are looking to highlight certified School Library Media Specialist who have recently received recognition at a district or county level, for instance, through the NJ Governor's Educator of the Year Program. If you know of someone in Morris County who has been the recipient of such an honor please encourage them to reach out to us or NJASL for highlighting in their statewide advocacy campaign.

As busy as we are it is imperative to stay informed and continuously build your network. To do so, I invite you to get involved. Come to an MCSMA meeting – meet other librarians, share ideas, learn from each other, network and build friendships. Our first meeting of the year will focus on Conference Readiness come find out what our fantastic Morris County School Librarians are doing and turnkey these ideas in your library program.

Wanted: Presenters

Highlight the great teacher librarians you are as part of our organization. Share your strengths with our MCSMA members. MCSMA’s first program this Fall is a pre-conference trial run. If you or your colleagues are planning on presenting at NJASL this December consider signing up to present your workshop with us on Thursday, October 17. This will allow you time to work out any kinks and free up our members to attend presentations by Librarian Media Specialists outside of Morris County. To sign up please complete the registration.

Hope to see you soon,

Tara Collins President MCSMA

Thinking Out of the Box - Vouching for Vouchers

Whenever I think of “vouchers” I think immediately of “school vouchers.” But, in her article “Vouching for Vouchers” Kathi Berens got me thinking of how vouchers could be used in other ways to make money. If a ticket is $3, make it $4 with a $1 voucher toward something on sale. Think about school plays with school merchandise on sale afterward. Or football games with concession stands or sponsored bake sales. It is a different way of marketing, making more money for your cause, and making the purchaser feel good about getting a discount on a buy. Here is a direct link to the article and the citation for reference. VOUCHING FOR VOUCHERS

Berens, Kathi Inman. "Vouching for Vouchers." Publishers Weekly. 5 August 2019: 72. (Print)

Vera Borum

Parsippany Public Library

Book Review: In Defense of a Liberal Education

With the United States pushing STEM curricula, the question bears asking, “Will there be a place for the liberal arts student?” In his book In Defense of a Liberal Education Fareed Zakaria provides insight into how we view colleges, what we think they were supposed to do and why, and how we need to re-think some of our expectations. All of us do not have an aptitude for science; many of us have a greater interest in poetry or music. Yet we all need the ability to communicate coherently through reading, writing, and logical thinking. This is the gift of the liberal education.

Using a keen bibliographic selection of books and articles Zakaria tells his own story of coming to America, a history of how the liberal education came to be, and how Americans have created their own aristocracy through education.

The book covers a lot of ground in less than 200 pages. The audiobook is just like hearing a TED talk. Since many librarians have degrees in the humanities and many more are struggling to retain their relevancy in this century, I think everyone should read this book. Not only is it enjoyable and informative, but it provides thoughtful topics for discussions we should all be taking part in.

Vera Borum, MLIS

Parsippany Public Library

Morris County School Media Association Membership Application

Please complete this form and bring it to the next meeting with a check for $15 or mail to: Roxana Caivano

Roxbury High School

1 Bryant Drive

Succasunna NJ 07876

Date _________

Name: _________________________

School/Address: __________________________

Grade Level: _____________________

District: _________________________________ Private _______

School Phone: _____________ School Fax: _______________

School E-Mail Address: _______________________________________

School Web Site Address: __________________________

Home Address: _______________________________


Home Phone: ___________________________

Alternate/Personal E-mail ____________________


Each year students in grades 6-12 are invited to participate in the History Day competition.

Students have the opportunity to read and discover in-depth a topic of their choice as it relates to the annual theme. The theme for 2020 is “Breaking Barriers in History.” Librarians and teachers serve as first-step resources in completing projects in posters, websites, documentaries, written papers, and other formats. Students have an opportunity to use all their critical thinking skills in scaffolding presentations that may eventually qualify for national competition as well as polishing their public speaking.

To read more about History Day and to download the contest theme book, visit Locations for the New Jersey regional contests will be announced later this fall.

If you and/or any of the teachers in your school are interested in being judges for any of the New Jersey regional contests, please send an email of interest with your name and contact information to

2019-2020 Executive Board Officers

President: Tara Collins

Vice-President: Steve Cullis

Corresponding Secretary: Vera Borum

Recording Secretary: Susan Ploch

Treasurer: Nancy Bosch

Advocacy and Legislation Updates from Kim Luppino

Libraries Transform Bookpick

The Libraries Transform Book Pick is a new digital reading program that connects readers nationwide by offering free access to the same ebook through public libraries.

At the same time, it gives public libraries and the professionals working there opportunities to engage with readers about the ebook, as well as showcase digital collections and other library resources and programs. Check with your local library!

Tell MacMillan Publishers that You Demand #ebooksforall

Beginning November 1, 2019, Macmillan Publishers will allow libraries to purchase only one copy of each new eBook title for the first eight weeks after a book’s release. Macmillan is the only major publisher to propose such an embargo, and readers cannot stay silent! Sign the petition!

Current Legislation from NJASL

Follow us online!