I LOVE the AASL’s Toolkit for Promoting School Library Programs (apologies to those of you in 815 who already heard me rant about this). It’s so chock full of amazing info and suggestions that we should ALL download it, print it, and staple it to our foreheads (or something like that). Seriously, I would wallpaper my office with it. If I had an office.
Beyond all the freakin’ AMAZING suggestions in the toolkit (seriously, why are you reading this post? <voice type=”Mr. T”>Read the toolkit, fool!</voice>), I think the biggest thing we can do/need to do is be SUPER present in the school. Join every committee that’s relevant and figure out ways the library can help the school advance its goals. Offer to host as many events in the library as possible. Eat lunch in the staff room and kvetch with the teachers. If you’re sports-minded at all, coach.
We have market the library, HARD. We say yes to every opportunity that we can fit into the library. We join every committee we can reasonably join. We integrate ourselves into discussions about curriculum, planning, physical space, community involvement, etc. We engage the students, the teachers, the administration, and the community in library planning and use. We volunteer the space for every reasonable purpose, meeting, etc.
In short, we make the library the center of the school. We make it the first choice for as many purposes as we can.
When folks are there, we make the library as welcoming, as vibrant, as we can. We have comfortable seating areas, interesting decorations, and (of course) a vibrant and relevant collection of books fiction and non, technology, reference materials, and other interesting and inviting media.