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Welcome to registration for the upcoming 2017 Illinois School Library Media Association Conference!

Illinois School Library Media Association has seen a great many changes over the last 30 years.

Over the last three decades, the advent of the internet, online resources, social media and digital tools have shaped the landscape of education, but one thing hasn’t changed. School Librarians are still leading the way. We are “Shining Bright!”

This year’s 2017 Illinois School Library Media Association Conference’s workshops and sessions tackle the current school library trends like makerspaces, digital learning and 1:1 technology, collaboration, inclusion and is an opportunity to meet amazing authors and fellow librarians from around the state. Starting on October 19 at 9:30 am with a series of workshops that include creative learning in the library and the best new books in 2018 to the after hours event “MakerSpaces with Colleen Graves”, ISLMA’s professional development opportunities will provide the latest ways you can impact learning all weekend long. Friday’s conference offerings include over 40 sessions that address technology, collection development, teaching and leadership, as well as ISLMA’s Awards Dinner. Your conference comes to an end on Saturday, filled with plenty of professional development, Author’s Breakfast, YA Day with Battle of the Books and some inspirational words from author Simone Elkeles as your closing speaker.

Don’t miss this year’s 2017 Illinois School Library Media Association Conference “30 Years and Shining Bright”!


Makerspace Event

Maybe you’ve heard of this new library trend called Makerspaces?
Maybe you’ve heard the word thrown around but aren’t really sure what it really means?
Maybe you would love to start one in your school library but aren’t really sure what it would entail or look like?

The 2017 Illinois School Library Media Association Conference has some answers for you!

Join ISLMA and Makerspace pioneer and author, Colleen Graves, on Thursday, October 19th at 7:00 p.m. at the Abraham Lincoln Hotel in Springfield, Illinois to get expert advice on starting and maintaining a Makerspace in your school library. The evening will start with an hour long discussion with Colleen Graves about hands on learning in the library setting and how to engage your students in creative and innovative activities. Afterwards, you will become the student in a Makerspace workshop that will give you concrete examples of the kinds of programing, tools and activities that you can bring home to your own school library. Attendees may earn three Professional Development Hours for this activity.

Tickets for this paid event are available to librarians, teachers, administrators and anyone interested in interactive learning in a library setting for the cost of $15.00 with an online registration or $25.00 at the door. (**Conference attendees registration for the Makerspace Event is included in conference registration.)

Don’t miss this opportunity to get advice on starting a program of hands on, real world learning in your library!


ISLMA Fall Awards - Apply Today

The Grants and Awards committee is accepting nominations for the Polestar, Upstart, and Administrator of the Year Awards. Click here for the nominations form. Nominations must be submitted electronically to by 11:59 PM on September 1st. Winners will be honored during the ISLMA Fall Conference.

“Rally to Restore School Librarians” held at the Thompson Center in Chicago on Friday, June 23rd

Over 110 school librarians and supporters call on the governor and state legislators to improve school funding and ensure a licensed school librarian in every Illinois school.

The Illinois School Library Media Association (ISLMA) held a demonstration on Friday, June 23rd at the Thompson Center to call for the restoration of school librarian positions in schools and districts around the state, and improvements to funding for school library program budgets for all Illinois students. The “Rally to Restore School Librarians” kicks-off a year-long effort to encourage the governor and General Assembly, along with school boards and superintendents across the state, to address state aid for school libraries and local staffing priorities.

“School districts in Illinois are making the wrong choice by cutting school library budgets and laying off licensed school librarians,” says Patti Fleser, 2016-2107 president of ISLMA. “The school library is the largest classroom in the school, and it needs a collection that supports student achievement. School librarians support not just classwork but the discovery and achievement of the whole child.”
The Rally opened with incoming ISLMA president Roskovensky outlining the problems we are facing throughout the state. Testimony was given by Elizabeth Semande, a student from Spoon River Valley, about how she and her classmates don't receive the educational support they need because their librarian was cut. Scott Walter, a parent of a Chicago Public School (CPS) student, spoke about how the cuts to CPS school librarians have been made even though education leaders have been putting a focus on skills that are taught in the library and developed with teachers collaborating with instructional partners in the library. ISLMA President Fleser concluded the speaking with encouragement that ISLMA will continue to advocate for the students of Illinois.

Protesters then took home thousands of comment cards to be signed and sent to Governor Rauner and their own state legislators. Already over 1,650 Chicago parents have already contacted Mayor Emanuel and the CPS Board asking them to restore school librarians through our partners at EveryLibrary -

We echo what our colleague Julie Todaro, President of the American Library Association, said when she spoke to Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel at the recent ALA conference: “We hope to see a future that shows increased backing of the school libraries…. Chicago Public Libraries are fabulous and your partnerships are great, but the loss of school librarians is great and there are some extraordinary Chicago Public School Librarians out there.”

Numerous studies show that a licensed school librarian positively impacts student achievement. School librarians teach students to evaluate information that they read, critically and competently. Information literacy and internet safety are at the core of their work. Districts across the state from Chicago and the suburbs to downstate rural communities have eliminated librarians. Staffing levels across the state have reached a crisis point. As Illinois looks to restore equity to our education system through implementing the Every Student Succeeds Act, the time is right to re-engage about budget choices that improve student outcomes, including library programs and librarians.

“Effective school library programs are vital to student achievement,” says Jacob Roskovensky, High School Library Media Specialist-Charleston Community Unit School District #1 and current president of ISLMA. “We know that a licensed school librarian in the library is a vital member of the faculty and an effective educator for our kids. We want every student in Illinois have access to the collections and programs that support their curriculum, and a school librarian on staff who can help.”

This demonstration drew attendees from across the state and around the country. ISLMA was supported in this Rally to Restore School Librarians by several organizations and associations including EveryLibrary, Urban Librarians Unite, the Illinois Library Association, the American Library Association (ALA), the American Association of School Librarians (AASL), the Young Adult Library Services Association, the School of Information Studies at Dominican University, and Follett Learning.

This unique and targeted advocacy effort brings together school librarians and other stakeholders to create a renewed choice about librarians and libraries in all Illinois schools. It builds upon the strategic effort that ISLMA has made to highlight the importance of effective library programs in the state ESSA Implementation Plan. It will go beyond policy and into action to lobby for positions and programs across the state.

Jacob Roskovensky
Illinois School Library Media Association

These are the ten videos from the Virtual Maker Space day found on YouTube on the ISLMA Advocacy channel:
ISLMA Virtual Maker Meetup Opening
S1: A Dozen Ways to Ditch your Excuses
S1: Maker space...just do it
S1: Maker Kits from ISL
S2: Going green; it's easier than you think.
S2: Game of drones
S2 S T E M in Disguise More than meets the eye Transforming Literature into STEM Challenges
S3: Rigamajig
S3: Makerspace meets Children's Literature
S3: Creating Virtual Reality Worlds with CoSpaces

In the Annual Election for Illinois School Library Media Association, Mary Morgan Ryan was Elected President Elect for the 2017-2018 year.
Mary Morgan Ryan is currently the Media Resource Center Director, Oak School, Hinsdale, IL.
Elected Secretary for the Association was Dawn Scuderi, Media Specialist for Homer Consolidated School District 33C, Hadley Middle School, Homer Glen, IL.
Newly elected board members include Mariela Siegert, IMC Director/School Librarian, Westfield Middle School, Bloomingdale, IL, and Eric Bodwell, Librarian, Neuqua Valley High School, Naperville, IL.
Congratulations to these officers and thanks to all who agreed to run for office.

ISLMA needs your help in promoting library media programs across Illinois

Check out the page on ESSA (Every Student Succeeds Act) to learn more.


The most current version of I-SAIL!  If you are interested in a framework to teach the needed skills in all content areas you will want to click here.

Remember these standards, benchmarks, and objectives are aligned to the new Illinois Common Core Standards, AASL and NGSS as well as the ISTE standards.

Start sailing......


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Date Modified: 7/26/17

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Illinois School Library Media Association | PO Box 1326 | Galesburg, IL 61402-1326
Telephone: 309-341-1099 | Fax: 309-341-2070 | email

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