Obama’s Blueprint for Reform needs YOUR comments!
I was watching “Horton Hears a Who” the other night with my daughter. It has always been one of my favorite stories because it so clearly illustrates the power of a combined effort to effect change. Dr. Seuss was a genius and his ability to distill a single concept into a creative, enjoyable, classic piece of children’s literature is virtually unmatched. Okay…you know I’m going to turn this into something about libraries, right? Here it is – think of The HELP Committee as the Wickersham Gang and we librarians are the Whos. And all over Who-ville we’ve got to make some NOISE!
We have all heard about the Blueprint for Reform and found that libraries and librarians hardly registered a blip on the radar. Now here is your opportunity to revive that heartbeat! Submit your well-stated comments, feedback, and suggestions to ESEAcomments@help.senate.gov by May 7, 2010. Back up your comments with data as well as with examples of strong library programming at work. Prove your worth by showing how you make a positive affect on student achievement. STEM is the buzzword these days but those initiatives can also be drastically improved with the support of a strong library media program. Show them how.
This is an opportunity that we ALL must take. There have been countless rumblings on Georgiamedia and LM-NET about the number of library media specialists losing their jobs and library media programs losing their funding. When the Blueprint was first made public there was an immediate outcry from library organizations at the blatant omission of libraries. Library funding is being rolled into a grant program that incorporates 5 other worthy programs thus making it that much more difficult (and time consuming and red tape wading) to get. We simply cannot continue to lament this to each other unless we’re willing to sing to someone other than the choir!
If you believe in what you do (I believe), if you know that you make a difference (I do), and you are passionate about the idea of providing services to every student regardless of their reading level, economic status, or academic placement (I am passionate) then compose your most compelling argument and send it to the HELP (Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions) Committee. Better yet, write a compelling argument that a parent could use to submit a comment. How about one for your students to send? Your business partner(s)? There are many possibilities here so be creative and use them.
So, even if you’re the tiny little Jo-Jo from Apartment 12-J, it’s time to climb to the top of the Eiffelberg Tower (your email), clear your throat (dust off the keys), and shout. Just say what you mean and mean what you say. And send out an email to HELP – today! (apologies to the good Doctor).