BCALA Support for D.C. School Librarians

We are proud to see the support of the Black Caucus of the American Library Association for the Washington D.C. School Librarians. Read the full statement below.


Support DC School Librarians by sending an email to the Chancellor here.


[NEW YORK, NEW YORK  APRIL 2, 2020 ]-- School libraries are a vital component of our youth’s daily life and education.  They provide students with needed access to resources such as computers, books, and other informational materials. Public school libraries are key in helping bridge the educational gap. As such, public school libraries should be cherished and supported in the quest to meet the federal mandate of the Every Child Succeeds Act (ESSA).

The Black Caucus of the American Libray Association, Inc. (BCALA)  strongly opposes the proposed flexible staffing initiative by the District Public School System. The initiative will increase the likelihood that the positions of DC school librarians will be flexible and possibly eradicated based on mandates of school principals.

When promoted as a vital element of education, the school library is a place of equity providing all students access to resources vital to their education. When properly funded, the school library provides resources for each content area for every child within the school. To deny a child access to a school library with a certified librarian reduces a child’s chance of academic success. Numerous educational impact studies support this statement. The research of Keith Curry Lance (2000, 2005, 2011, 2012, and 2015) and the Library Research Service (2012), indicates that a school library staffed with a certified school librarian greatly increases a child’s chance of scholastic success.

If DCPS is to be a proponent for equity and access, it is imperative that the proposed “flexible position” description for school librarians be changed to “required and certified.”


About the Black Caucus of the American Library Association (BCALA)

BCALA serves as an advocate for the development, promotion, and improvement of library services and resources to the nation’s African American community; and provides leadership for the recruitment and professional development of African American librarians.