"Never look down on someone
                                unless you're helping them up."
                             -
Jesse Jackson

 

 

 

Professional Growth Plan

 

The Prospective Leadership of School Librarians

 

 

          Working as a public librarian for years was an absolute, genuine experience. I interacted with patrons of various age, race, and abilities. Connecting patrons to their community was one of the main goals in public librarianship. At the end of each workday, I knew I was entirely dedicated to the librarian profession. Librarianship was, and still is, my passion. It’s a beautiful milestone in life when a passion and career come together. However, sometimes the road of life takes unexpected turns.

In the Spring of 2013, I was offered a job as a school librarian. Working in a school library would be an incredible opportunity. I would be interacting with students and educators on a daily basis. After heavy consideration, I followed my intuition and decided to leave public librarianship to pursue a career in school librarianship. For months, I debated whether or not I made the correct decision. However, after a few months working in a school setting, I adapted well amongst my colleagues, students, and administrators. I was combining both my research/literacy and technology skills and they proved to be highly effective once the Common Core State Standards made its way into our school district.

 

          Educational technology leadership involves the process of learning and leading. Successful leaders are learners. And the learning process never ends. As a 21st century school librarian, I am deeply connected to my career and doctoral academics. As a doctoral student enrolled in New Jersey City University’s Educational Technology Leadership Program, I promise to inspire followers by serving as a role model while creating a vision for myself. I strive to pursue lifetime learning opportunities for professional growth by presenting and attending local educational technology and librarian conferences. I will also continue to present professional development to my school district throughout the year on the latest educational technology tools and formative assessments. I will strive to professionally grow with my fellow Cohort 4 doctoral students and professors while interacting with other librarians in my personal learning network. I am an advocate for both libraries and technology and will continue to articulate the importance of both. Writing for library and educational technology journals is a goal I wish to attain in the future.

 

          Transformational leadership coincides with both library and educational settings because it involves all participants in the process. I will continue to serve on the BELS Consortium Executive Board and Mackin TYSL Advisory Board to guide school librarians on the current trends in librarian leadership and technology. By engaging with others, creating connections, and raising levels of motivation, both leaders and followers perform in unity. Transformational leaders motivate followers to accomplish more than expected and help them on their journeys. One of my main beliefs is enabling an atmosphere of trust by collaborating with my cohort members, other educators, and librarians. By engaging in these types of alliances, we both focus on organizational change (Northouse, 2013). The input of others is essential in transformational leadership. I will strive to use new and innovative methods in completing particular tasks. School librarians have become curators of digital resources (Valenza, 2012). Therefore, I will continue to assist my school in locating digital resources to implement the Common Core State Standards.

 

          I've come to terms that failure will occur at times during my doctoral journey. However, failure is an opportunity to grow. I will learn from my mistakes, making sure to keep a growth mindset. Over the years, I have learned to listen more and speak only when it is relevant. Above all, I take the time to recognize, appreciate, and encourage both students and teachers, taking the time to thank and show them they are appreciated (Reilly, 2015).

 

          Today’s school librarians are combining their library/information specialist roles with educational technology integration. As a school librarian and doctoral student of educational technology leadership, I will continue to take hold of the numerous opportunities that librarians now possess. In the era of educational technology and the Common Core, school librarians are vital to student success and we have to make sure to make our presence known to other educational leaders.

 

Benchmark Measures

 

2016-2017

• Establish a relationship with both the Cohort 4 Edtech Giants doctoral students and Educational Technology Leadership  
  Doctoral Program instructors

• Publish a peer-reviewed article in School Library Connection

• Launch Edcamp Urban (Professional Development) in Hudson County, New Jersey

• Present at NJASL (New Jersey Association of School Librarians) in November 2016

• Present at NJECC (New Jersey Educational Computing Conference) in January 2017

• Present at NJAMLE (New Jersey Association for Middle Level Education)

  in March 2017

• Present a webinar for the American Association of School Librarians

• Build my online PLN of librarians and educators

• Volunteer on the Girls in Technology Symposium

• Volunteer on the International Librarians Network Peer Mentoring Program

• Continue to serve on the BELS Consortium Executive Board

• Continue to present professional development to North Bergen School District

• Continue to serve on the Mackin TYSL Advocacy Board

• Continue to host #NJLibChat Twitter Chats (bi-monthly)

• Conduct research for dissertation proposal

 

2017-2018:

• Present at various educational technology / librarian conferences

• Teach an online course

• Continue to serve on the BELS Consortium Executive Board

• Continue to present professional development to North Bergen School District

• Continue to serve on the Mackin TYSL Advocacy Board

• Continue to host #NJLibChat Twitter Chats (bi-monthly)

• Learn app development

• Conduct research for dissertation proposal

 

2018-2019:

• Continue to serve on the BELS Consortium Executive Board

• Continue to present professional development to North Bergen School District

• Continue to serve on the Mackin TYSL Advocacy Board

• Continue to host #NJLibChat Twitter Chats (bi-monthly)

• Complete all coursework of the Educational Technology Leadership Doctoral Program

• Develop, complete, and defend my dissertation

• Graduate with a Doctorate in Education (EdD) degree in Educational Technology Leadership

 

Beyond the Doctoral Degree:

• Become a Google Certified Innovator

• Develop an app for public libraries

• Develop a mobile time-management game on the theme of community workers

• Publish several articles in peer-reviewed journals

• Continue to present at conferences and workshops

• Continue to serve on the BELS Consortium Executive Board

• Continue to present professional development to North Bergen School District

• Continue to serve on the Mackin TYSL Advocacy Board

• Continue to host #NJLibChat Twitter Chats (bi-monthly)

• Become a board member on a professional library association (ALA, AASL, NJASL)

 

 

References

 

Northouse, P. G. (2013). Leadership: Theory and practice (6th ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.

Reilly, M. (2015). Getting genuine commitment for change. Educational Leadership, 72(7), 42-46.

Valenza, J. K. (2012). Curation. School Library Monthly, 29(1), 20-23.

Wine, L. D. (2016). School Librarians as Technology Leaders: An Evolution in Practice. Journal of Education For 
        Library &  Information Science, 57
(2), 207-220. doi:10.12783/issn.2328-2967/57/2/12

 

 

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