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Questions from a current graduate student in New York (and fellow Teacher Librarian Ning member)

Hello everyone,

I am a MSLIS/ School Media student at Syracuse University in NY, and I will be graduating this December. My heart is set on moving to Colorado, preferably somewhere along the front range, and working as a Teacher Librarian.
I have a couple of questions, and I am excited to pose them to this group, because I know you are the best authorities on the subject. I am wondering:

1. How is the climate of librarianship in Colorado? Are Teacher Librarians respected and valued in the schools in your districts? By the state of Colorado in general?

2. What are prospects for new LIS graduates coming to Colorado? Do you have any suggestions for a December graduate like myself?

So far, I have signed on to several job listservs, including the CO Library Jobline from the CO Dept of Education, and I have visited several CO school websites to learn about the different districts and communities. Is there anything else you suggest I do at this point?

Thank you all for any time you are able to give to my questions. I know this is a busy time for you. I appreciate your help.

Best,
Jennifer Sullivan

P.S.- I attached my working resume so that you know more about who I am. Thanks again!

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Jennifer, Colorado school libraries along the front range are particularly active and teacher-librarians are highly respected in the educational community. Our senior school library consultant with the Co. Dept. of Education, Nance Nassar, is a tireless advocate, and worked within CDE to raise the importance of the teacher librarian through a state initiative that required school district technology plans to be ET-IL plans - educational technology & information literacy, with such required elements as strategies for integrating technology and information literacy through collaboration with the school librarian. We also have the Power Library Program, a competitive program to recognize high performance teacher librarians and share best practices throughout the state. That being said, Colorado is a local control state, and there is no requirement that every school must have a certified teacher-librarian. The last estimate I heard is that nearly 50% of our schools don't have a certified librarian. That tends to be more at the elementary level, and in rural areas of the state. Here are a few sites you might want to visit:
CASL Blog
Colorado Teacher-Librarian Ning
Power Library Ning

Best wishes,
Nancy White
Co-President Elect - CASL
Thank you, Nancy, for your comprehensive and thoughtful reply. I am glad to hear that CO has implemented strategic programs to recognize the efforts of good teacher-librarians. That gives me even more of an impetus to live and work there. I love NY, but I have been here a long time, and I am ready for a change. CO speaks to me like no place else. I love the mountains and the active lifestyle people embrace there.
Thank you for taking the time to provide me great resources for my job search. Being a December graduate makes my road a bit rockier because job postings drop off once the school year begins; so, I need all the resources I can get! If you are willing, please keep me in mind if you hear of an opening. I am certified to teach in NY, and I will be getting my school library certification in December. Best wishes to you, and I hope we are able to meet in person someday.

Jen Sullivan
Hi Jen,
I don't know if you are still on the job search, but I stumbled upon this posting today.

http://21centurylibrarian.ning.com/notes/Adams_50_Needs_Librarian
Ooh, my goodness! Thank you! (yes, I am still looking) I will definitely look into this right away.

Thanks again!

Jen

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