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Spokane Moms stir it up

Sara Kelly Johns is headed to Washington to meet the Spokane Moms and to rally on behalf of the state’s Mini-SKILLs bill. The bill, developed in a reaction to Spokane’s proposed time cuts in ten K-8 school library positions, would ensure that credentialed school librarians serve schools according to a per-pupil ratio.

Moms, Lisa Layera Brunkan, Susan McBurney, and Denette Hill, are partnering with the Washington Library Media Association, which became a charter member of the newly formed Washington Coalition for School Libraries and Information Technology (WCSLit).  

The Washington bill echoes the language of the national SKILLs (Strengthening Kids’ Interest in Learning and Libraries) Act, a proposed unfunded amendment to the No Child Left Behind Act, sceduled for Senate review next month.  The Coalition hopes to see the state bill become law at end of the state legislative session on March 13.

Sara will join ALA President Loriene Roy, AASL’s Julie Walker and other ALA folks to participate in a school library media summit that will be held in Olympia on Friday. 

This critical grassroots action could become a national model.

"It may make a big difference for school library positions in Washington and beyond. The moms are amazing," said Sara, who encourages Washington school librarians, and librarians in other states, to get involved:

We have worked hard to provide advocacy training and resources. Advocacy, promotion, and marketing are crucial parts of the puzzle. And we have to be involved as national, state, and local associations, and as individuals in our buildings and districts, so that students get the instruction they need and the resources to excite their love of reading. But the strongest advocates are passionate parents and students.

Joyce Valenza About Joyce Valenza

Joyce is an Assistant Professor of Teaching at Rutgers University School of Information and Communication, a technology writer, speaker, blogger and learner. Follow her on Twitter: @joycevalenza


  1. Sara Kelly Johns says:

    It was so awesome to attend a power summit organized by Mike Eisenberg, to rally on the steps of the capital building with rain and wind and frozen feet, to have the House bill come out of committee while we were there, to meet three passionate, powerful persistent but not pushy women work hard to make a difference for their kids by strengthening Washington’s school libraries. Wow!

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