LIBRARIANS! accommodating, enthusiastic, energetic, organized, reliable, inquisitive, risk-taking, willing to experiment, not uncomfortable with change, hard-working, willing to compromise and adapt to meet teachers’ needs
STAFF! The library team needs to be able to respond to multiple demands for access to physical space, resources and personnel.
TEACHERS! Successful flexible programs have teachers who are inquiry-based, believe that children are curious and can learn to ask good questions, teachers who are collegial: open to sharing, cooperative, willing to be involved and to share accountability, good team players and communicators. They are flexible themselves: willing to try new things, risk-takers, creative, open-minded, willing to learn, comfortable with lack of structure. They are good planners who appreciate literature and information, are assertive, are concerned with the big picture, and who do not give up easily. (McGregor)
PRINCIPALS! Their support as a vital element in the success of implementing flexible scheduling
PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT! This is key to develop skills at integration and discover the ways to best use the flexible scheduling model.
REFLECTION! A program assessment plan is vital to continuous improvement.
CURRICULUM! Documenting teaching and learning is essential. Skills and content curriculum (including assessment) must be tracked.
If you don't have a reason for change, change is difficult.
The 6 Secrets of Change for School Leaders -- this includes librarians!
The following list comes from Michael Fullan, leader in educational change and school leadership. While the "Six Secrets" were initially created with principals in mind, it is applicable to librarians as educational leaders. When thinking about implementing flexible scheduling, these six secrets of change are important to consider.
1. Love your employees: show value in teachers’ contributions to the development of programs, provide professional development opportunities for teachers, value teacher input and participation in the process of developing the vision and implementing flexible scheduling
2. Connecting Peers with Purpose: this is an opportunity for all faculty to learn through collaborative planning, PLCs, and learning.
3. Capacity Building Prevails: Cultivating leadership capacity in team leads, teachers, building lesson design and inquiry-based learning capacity in teachers
4. Learning is the Work: applying new knowledge and skills (effective collaboration, lesson design/lessons chema), professional development focused on lesson design, project-based learning,inquiry-based learning.
5. Transparency Rules: deprivatizing practice through learning walks, lesson study, looking at student work protocols, PLCs, assessment data collection
6. Systems Learn: developing teacher leaders, enhance continuity through shared lessondesign agreements.Decision Making Model
Consider the 6 secrets with the lens of either moving toward flexible scheduling or working to maintain an existing program.
Being a leader is not easy. Implementing change can present challenges. The following is a light hearted video that also sends a powerful message.
Who will be your first follower?
Fullan’s (1991) description of change stages suggests that continuation or institutionalization happens once the new initiative has become the way things are done.
The task of selling the initiative never ends. New teachers, new principals, and new district administrators often mean training or convincing new people. Even in schools where everyone was delighted by the way in which the library supports learning, the initiative must be maintained (McGregor).
J. (2014, July 17). Position Statement on Flexible Scheduling. Retrieved March 21, 2017, from http://www.ala.org/aasl/advocacy/resources/statements/flex-sched
Lee, C. (2015, November 13). You Say. Retrieved March 21, 2017, from http://knowledgequest.aasl.org/say-library-say-learning-commons-whats-big-diff/
Fullan, M. 1991. The new meaning of educational change. New York: Teachers College Pr.
Fullan, M. (2001). Leading in a culture of change. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.
McGregor, Joy. "ALA | Flexible Scheduling: Implementing an Innovation." ALA | Home - American Library Association. N.p., n.d. Web. 17 Mar. 2017.
McGregor, J. H. 1999. The Takeshi Murofushi Research Award: Implementing flexible scheduling in elementary libraries. In Unleash the power! Knowledge, technology, diversity, papers presented at the third International Forum on Research in School Librarianship, eds. Lynne Lighthall and Eleanor Howe, 11-21. Seattle, Wash.: International Association of School Librarianship.
Shannon, Donna M. "Tracking the Transition to a Flexible Access Library Program in Two Library Power Elementary Schools." SLMR Online and Copy. N.p., n.d. Web. 17 Mar. 2017.
(n.d.). Retrieved March 21, 2017, from http://libraries.idaho.gov/blogs/jeanniestandal/january-best-practice-month-flexible-scheduling