USA Study Trip Meeting 2 – Barbara Stripling, Library Services for NYC School Library System

Meeting 2 – 24.10.11, 9am

Barbara Stripling, Director of Library Services for the NYC School Library System

Reasons to meet

  • Barbara has a great overview of the different services offered in the 1700 schools in her jurisdiction
  • She has a information literacy framework she recommends to all schools that I wanted to talk to her about


  • Barbara talked about how, whilst all librarians report to their principals, she liaises between them, and provides support, vision, CPD, etc.
  • We spent a long time talking through the Information Fluency Continuum – this is a set of skills based around 3 strands, that go right from K –Grade 12, with simple benchmark skills for each level.  Barbara gave me a copy of this to take away on a USB, and I want to look at this in some detail as ultimately this is the sort of thing I want to have at Shrewsbury
  • Barbara stressed that it was vital for information skills to always be taught within research projects that are part of a subject, rather than discreet teaching – this was the only way to really embed this learning
  • Barbara also felt that team teaching was always the best model, as it strengthened collaboration and made sure the teacher was aware of what research skills were included in their project
  • We talked about encouraging reading in other languages.  Barbara thought this was very important – it honours who they are and increases their sense of self, but also an 18 year old who is fully bilingual is far better educated than one who only speaks 1.5 languages.  She also said how providing curriculum-related non-fiction in other languages meant students could reinforce learning in their classroom, and learn new vocabulary in both languages
  • We also talked about benefits of and methods to get parents into school libraries.

Josie to take away

  • Continue developing MFL collections.  In Thai, try to start getting some NF covering key curriculum topics such as Shakespeare, Mangroves, WW2, etc.
  • Go through the Information Fluency Continuum in some detail, and start planning a similar model for Shrewsbury
  • Select 3 or 4 supportive teachers and ask to do some team-teaching on research skills this year
  • With the L4L research skills sessions I’m doing with Carly later this term, adapt them so they directly relate to the previous or next topic she’s looking at with them.

About angellibrarian

Children's/teen librarian working in an international school in Thailand.
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