O. P. Cooper and Marty Bray wrote “School Library Media Specialist-Teacher Collaboration: Characteristics, Challenges, Opportunities” (Subscription required) in the July/August 2011 issue of TechTrends.
The most successful school library media specialists are those who collaborate with teachers as full partners in the instructional process. Without assertive action by the school library media specialist, however, school administrators and teachers are likely to be more aware of the media specialist’s administrative role than the roles of teacher, instructional partner, and information specialist. Reductions to library media staff and finding common planning time are examples of serious challenges, but these are not insurmountable. In the context of well-planned instructional projects, collaboration with teachers is a primary way that school library media professionals can demonstrate that their work is a vital part of the academic life of their schools, and a positive factor in improving student achievement.