Draft standards for model school library released

Even as districts continue to consider cutting hours and services at school libraries in response to the budget crisis, the California Department of Education is preparing for better times with release Thursday of draft standards for school libraries.

Students need to know how to access, evaluate, and use information effectively so they can become information literate, said State Superintendent of Public Instruction Jack O'Connell in a statement.

The draft Model School Library Standards for California Public Schools is now available for review and public comment through December 18. The standards are set to go before the California State Board of Education in March.

I encourage everyone to review the new, rigorous standards which are designed to help students prepare for success in the hypercompetitive global economy that is powered by information and knowledge, OConnell said. We want to ensure that these standards help students to learn and work with 21st century skills, so they may apply responsible research practices, act with respect for others when using digital devices, and continue to grow as life-long learners.

Although sometimes targeted for budget cuts, the CDE reports that national studies repeatedly have shown that students attending schools with good libraries learn more, get better grades, and score higher on standardized tests than their peers in schools without libraries.

The School Library Standards include:

Model School Library Standards that delineate what students should know and be able to do at each grade level, kindergarten through grade six; or grade spans, seven to eight, and nine to twelve.

Model School Library Program Standards that describe the collections and resources including technology, and staffing that are expected in an effective school library that will enable students to achieve the School Library Standards for students.

To read more visit: http://www.cde.ca.gov/ci/cr/lb/

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