School Library System

Week of September 9 - 13, 2019

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OverDrive Checkouts - Summer 2019

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OverDrive Google Authentication

At this time, we are encouraging schools to move to Google Authentication with OverDrive in order to have a more secure way of handling student information. Please read below for information on the process for moving to Google Authentication:

The Google Authentication process of creating and maintaining accounts for teachers and students is much easier and more secure than what has been done in the past (schools send us student information via Excel files). It is a seamless process to set up and once it is set up, any new students who arrive in your district are automatically added to OverDrive once they are in the school’s system. It is also a time saver for the district (you and IT people) if schools choose to authenticate freeing everyone up for more important tasks.

As long as your IT people are on board with making the necessary connections, it is as easy as them speaking with OverDrive to make the connections needed. It is a simple process, but your IT person must be willing to work with us and OverDrive to make the connections. They are welcome to contact Kerrie or Amanda with any questions they may have, but you can also give them the following technical information that came directly from the developer and legal team at OverDrive:

  • The app does not have full access to any school’s domain as an admin
  • The reason other vendors may not need read-only admin access is because they may not offer features such as content access levels and branch reporting like we do. The only information we read for these features is OU location and domain membership.
  • We also do not store any information that we receive. We do not need the password for the admin read-only account, if you would rather send screenshots of your OU structure when setting up Google with us. If you did provide us with the password in the past, you can change that password on your end, so we no longer have access to sign into the admin account. This would not interrupt the connection, at all. Without the password, we have absolutely no view of your system.
  • We're using the OAUTH standard and if we were to be hacked, the hacker would get no useful data. Even our backend logs only hold enough information for the past four days of students logging into OverDrive and then that information is purged from the system.
  • Our developers spent weeks of research during development of this authentication connection, and this specific Google API is the only way for us to retrieve information such as a user's OU. Access to this API requires a security certificate and service account, which are handled by our G Suite app, and a read-only administrative account within the domain whom we impersonate. Without these components in place, we cannot retrieve that information, and therefore cannot offer content access levels or branch reporting for users on that domain.

Please let us know if you have any questions or if your district would be interested in pursuing this method of log in for your students and teachers.

Sora Versus OverDrive

OverDrive is the app that student and adults have been using for many years now to access ebooks and audiobooks. A couple years ago, OverDrive created an app just for public library patrons called Libby. Because kids like the new Libby app so much, last year, OverDrive created an app just for students called Sora. Students can still use their public library accounts in Sora, but they cannot use their school accounts in Libby.

At our General Membership Meeting October 22, 2019, Lauren Bogatay-Tubbs will present to the group about Sora. It is highly recommended everyone attend so that you can begin to show students and teachers how to use this wonderful free resource. We will also begin the roll out of the revised IFC that day, but that's a bit of information for another day.

If you have any questions please email Amanda or Kerrie.

News You Can Use...

Reimagined Information Fluency Continuum

The Reimagined Information Fluency Continuum (IFC) is now available for use. You can access it on our LibGuide under the tab labeled IFC. Kerrie is meeting with District Superintendents this morning and will hand out a copy of the brochure that outlines the priority skills for the revised document.

Our October 22nd General Membership meeting will feature two regional librarians helping to roll out the new IFC. It is strongly recommended that all librarians in the region plan on attending this day long workshop. All librarians will receive a paper copy of the new IFC at the general membership meeting. We ask that you please bring your green binder (remove the old IFC first) to that meeting in order to practice sustainability by recycling the binders.

In addition, mark your calendars for the SLS Regional PD Day on December 4, 2019. Barbara Stripling will help librarians delve deeper into the IFC during this day long workshop at WSWHE BOCES. See the professional learning catalog for more information and to register.

A Note from the Three Apples Committee...

The Three Apples Committee hopes that everyone has had a smooth start to the school year. We had a bit of a late start but are happy to announce that the nomination forms for the Three Apples Award are up and running on the website.

There are two different ways to nominate books. Students can go directly to the Google Form for the grade and either select or write in their nomination OR librarians can use paper ballots with classes then tally the votes and enter them on the Librarian Google Form.

Be on the look out for activities to promote the nominations.


The Three Apples Committee

New York Library Association Membership

The SLS is providing membership to the New York Library Association, Section of School Librarians, and ENYSLMA to Communication Coordinators, Council Members, and new librarians this year. If you would like to continue your membership and are not part of one of the groups above, please send a check for $45 made out to Questar III with School Library System - Dues in the memo line to our Questar Central Office by October 10th. We encourage you to take advantage of networking and learning opportunities this membership can offer. If you have any questions about your membership, please contact us.

Learn about your Membership Benefits

Census 2020 Resources Now Available

The New York State Library is pleased to announce the release of the Census 2020 Resources web page. In an effort to count every person living in the United States, by April 1, 2020 the U.S. Census Bureau will have sent out invitations to participate in the 2020 Census, the first decennial census to be administered online. The web page was created by the New York State Library as a resource to emphasize the important role libraries play in creating awareness of the Census and by providing internet access for completing the Census online.

The sites included on this web page include complete count information; resources from the U.S. Census Bureau, ALA, and NYLA; a LibGuide created by the New York Library Complete Count Statewide Committee; resources for non-English-speaking populations; resources for hard to count disabled community; promotional materials; webinars; resources for educators and partners; and information on newsletters and e-mail lists.

Database Access 2019-2020

We will no longer be sending Word documents with log in information because you can now log in to the LRM to see the information for your school at any time. Please use the log in for your school that was given to you when we placed database orders. If you do not have that information, please contact your Communication Coordinator as they should have everyone's log in information for your district.

Please check your access at school and at home well before using the databases with students and/or faculty. If something is not functioning, please contact Amanda for assistance.

A reminder from our vendors:

Sharing access information with anyone that does not fall under the subscription license is considered a violation of the license agreement. Please do not post access information publicly as this also violates vendor license agreements.

Smart Start Grant Program

NYSED has issued an announcement of funding opportunity for the Smart Start Program. Grant announcement RFP #19-010 is posted on the Grants Administered by NYSED webpage. A live webinar will be held on September 25, 2019 at 9:30am. Please see the webpage for additional information. Questions about this opportunity must be sent to no later than October 8, 2019. A Questions and Answers summary will be posted by October 22, 2019. Completed applications must be postmarked by November 19, 2019. For additional information, please review the full Announcement of Funding Opportunity.

High School to College Transition Special Interest Group

Below is an article that we plan to discuss at our next High School to College Transition Interest Group at CDLC. The article highlights what librarians can do to help bridge the gap in skills between high school and college. If you are interested in this topic and would like to discuss more, please attend the Interest group meeting at CDLC on October 3rd from 3:30 - 4:30. There will be a Zoom link for those who would like to attend virtually. To register, please go to:

Professional Learning Opportunities

19-20 Professional Learning Catalog

Each year we create a professional learning catalog with all of the professional development that will take place during the year. It is where you will go for links to My Learning Plan to sign up for workshops. This catalog is meant to help you plan your own professional learning for the year. We will update this catalog if there are additions, deletions, or other changes that need to be made throughout the year so please be sure to check it regularly. You can access the Professional Learning Catalog here:

Mentor/New Librarian Welcome Event

October 2, 2019

4:00 pm- 5:30 pm

Questar III Central Office

Join us in welcoming our new librarians to the Questar III region! All librarians are welcome and encouraged to attend! Learning for the afternoon will include looking at the SLS resources available to all librarians in the region. Snacks will be provided.

Sign Up:

Book Buzz with Britt Buckenroth - Fall 2019

It's so hard to keep up with all the new books being published! This book club will give you the opportunity to expand your repertoire of NEW books, whether you are a school librarian or a teacher, as participants share the new books they have read. Participants will select and read NEW books (published in the last two years), from any genre, K-12 and write a book review. A review form will be provided. For each meeting, participants are expected to read either 1-2 chapter books, or 3-4 picture books and complete a review form for each book. ***PLEASE COME TO THE FIRST MEETING WITH COMPLETED BOOK REVIEWS AND READY TO DISCUSS YOUR FIRST SET OF CHOSEN BOOKS.*** The in-person one hour meetings will be held at Questar III Conference Center. Participants will earn a total of six credit hours for attending the three meetings and completing the required book reviews. This opportunity is open to school librarians and teachers at all grade levels.

FIRST MEETING: October 16th

Sign Up:

Gale NOVELNY Webinars

Gale has scheduled the following webinars for NOVELNY databases. Please see date, time and registration information below. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

Gale In Context: Opposing Viewpoints

October 2, 1:00- 1:30 pm

Gale In Context: Opposing Viewpoints is the premier online resource covering today's hottest social issues, from capital punishment to immigration to marijuana. In this webinar, we'll explore this rich resource for debaters that includes pro/con viewpoints, reference articles, interactive maps, infographics, and more. Recent enhancements will be highlighted as well!

Register here:

Gale In Context: Middle School

October 3, 1:00 - 1:30 pm

Gale In Context: Middle School is a research tool created to support developing middle school aged learners as they build critical thinking and research skills. Cross-curricular content combined with organizational tools such as Highlights and Notes, and a simple user interface helps learners feel confident as they explore. In this webinar we will review the tools and features available, as well as the simple design and workflow. Recent enhancements will be highlighted as well!

Register here:

Provided by the New York State Library, NOVELNY is a Statewide Internet Library connecting New Yorkers to 21st century information. NOVELNY is supported

Questar III School Library System

Kerrie Burch, School Library System Director
Arts in Education Director
Odyssey of the Mind Regional Director

Amanda Karian, School Library System Specialist