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Practically Paradise
Inside Practically Paradise

RANT: Put your name and face on your library website

Dear Librarian, 
I visited your school library website today to find your name but it wasn’t there. Your school website had a link to your library buried in a drop down menu, but your name wasn’t anywhere on the library page. I tried looking under the faculty list and you weren’t listed. Okay, I admit, sometimes you are listed in weird categories like related arts. What?! You aren’t a related arts teacher even if you have a fixed schedule teaching during a related arts block. You are an essential teacher of all curricular integration and library information skills. Put a value on your position and make a place on the site so everyone can find you.

When students, faculty, and parents walk into the physical library, they look for your face first. They need to be able to see you online, too. Put your photo on the page so they know who you are. The library cannot exist without you so don’t be shy. Put your smiling face there so students know who to approach with questions. I’m sorry you didn’t post your name, your photograph, and your email address. I might have been a prospective author wanting to visit your school or a prospective graduate student looking for a friendly environment to student teach. 

Be proud of your library and your place in it. 
Thank you for letting me rant.


  1. teacherninja says:

    Great tip, thanks!

  2. Lazygal says:

    My name is there, ditto my phone and e-mail, but school website policy is anti-face. Sad, but there’s ’tis.

  3. Misnomer says:

    What if you are not a teacher, don’t teach information literacy skills but have still been given a library. What then? Sorry I have to play devil’s advocate here as the clerks in my district have the job title of “Media Specialist”.

  4. Hi Misnomer, Help me understand your question. Are you asking whether your name should be on the website? On the library page? What your job title should be on the web page? My clerk’s name is also on my webpage, but I distinguish who is the library information specialist and who is the clerk. Would you do the same?

  5. Misnomer says:

    Hi Diane, the people who run the K-8 libraries in my district are high school graduates, BUT the official job title given to them… on paper…. by the administration….. is Media Specialist! Messed up, I know. I don’t want them advertising to the world that they are a Media Specialist when they clearly are not.

    In my part of the country Media Specialists are certified teachers who hold additional credentials in library science, usually a MLIS degree.

  6. Ah! Now I understand more of the problem. If we complain too loudly about this through union channels and administration, they think we are whining. Actually this is a good topic for discussion. Our state Dept. of Ed. lays out the criteria for being a library information specialist. If you don’t meet it, you shouldn’t claim that title. How about the position that paras and untrained people are put in? They are working in the librarian’s role, but aren’t qualified. Should they be called librarians? Doesn’t this diminish our profession? I’m open for comments.

  7. Really..a great discussion!

  8. Lazygal, I was just thinking. Couldn’t you put an avatar on your website to make it personable? I have always loved Joyce Valenza’s page and keep asking my students to create an avatar for me. Unfortunately it is always very stereotypical. I want a combination of friendly and cool librarian!

  9. Grace Trapalis says:

    RANT: Put your name and face on your library website Practically Paradise was a wonderful read. Hi, I applaud your blog for informing people, very interesting article, keep up it coming :)

  10. Walker Carmen says:

    This is such a great resource that you are providing and you give it away for free. I enjoy seeing websites that understand the value of providing a prime resource for free. I truly loved reading your post. Thanks! Team!

  11. wordpress expert says:

    First off good web site. I’m not sure if it may be talked about, however , if using Chrome I can never get the whole blog to load with out refreshing many times. Could possibly just be my modem. Enjoy!