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Check It Out: March 2, 2016

Your weekly news from the OPS Library Services Staff


March 4, 2016  Applications to attend NETA are due to Library Services

March 19, 2016: Mark your calendars for NSLA's School Librarians' Day at Mahoney State Park!  Speakers include Bruce Arant, Beth Kabes, and more!!! NSLA members can attend free. See flier for details.


Are you considering a transfer for next year? If so, please note that requests for transfers must go through Human Resources.  We anticipate openings for full time and travel positions at elementary level, and we may be adding some positions at the secondary level as well.  Please read the eligibility process carefully to determine if you are eligible for a transfer. The process information is attached below.

Send in your Read Across America Pictures!

Be sure to send Courtney any pictures you have of your Read Across America displays, activities, etc.!

Famous Librarians

Several of our OPS librarians have been in the spotlight lately! 

Katie Steele from Boyd Elementary made the cover of the Tech Integration Wavelengths newsletter with the lesson she did with students about email etiquette using Office 365. 

Rachel Prieksat at Harrison Elementary and Gavin Flint at Bryan High School both were featured in the UNO Library Sciences L.E.A.D newsletter.

Book Recommendations List

Peer pressure's not so bad when it comes to reading. A popular book has the power to sweep up even reluctant readers as word of its awesomeness catches on. Nobody knows better than tweens what books to recommend to other tweens, so we asked them: "What would you tell your friend to read?"

Metropolitan Reading Council Event

Library Look Fors--Let Your Voice Be Heard!

Above you will find a "Look fors" sheet that we have been asked to compile by the secondary division for coaches to use when they are visiting your libraries.  You will see one page that is "elementary" and one is "secondary."  Please look through the information on your respective page.  Let me know if there is anything you would add, change, or delete.  We will take all advice into account when we revise this document.  Responses are needed by March 9th.  Thank you in advance for your help with this!  (Please note: This is specifically something to aid in coaching visits.)  Be sure to provide feedback if you have any so that your voice can be heard as this will be something used by coaches in your buildings.

Seeking Your Advice--Elementary Librarians

We have an elementary librarian who is looking for advice on check in and check out procedures in a library without para support.  This librarian is also looking for some help on reminding students and teachers to bring books back on check out day.  Please send any advice you have to Courtney.  We will post it in a newsletter after spring break.  Thank you!


Young adult fantasy author Cassandra Clare will appear at an Omaha Public Library event at Westside Middle School, 8601 Arbor St. Cassandra will discuss her latest book Lady Midnight, answer questions from the audience, and sign copies of Lady Midnight. Cassandra will be joined by authors Holly Black and Sarah Rees Brennan. The Bookworm will have copies of Lady Midnight available for purchase at the event. Signing preference will be given to attendees with a copy of Lady Midnight. Other titles will be signed as time permits. The event is recommended for tweens and older. Doors will open at 1:15 p.m. Lady Midnight (Margaret McElderry, $24.95) is book 1 of the Dark Artifices series. Set in present-day Los Angeles, this series is follows the internationally bestselling Mortal Instruments series, with the featured characters introduced in City of Heavenly Fire. For questions, contact Julie Humphrey (

Event date: 
Sunday, March 13, 2016 - 2:00pm
Event address: 
Westside Middle School
8601 Arbor St.

Like the Images Used in this Newsletter?

If you like the images used in this newsletter, you and your students can easily find similar ones using Britannica Image Quest. Look for the link in the additional sources section of your school library webpage.  Or, you can use the Britannica School tile on your databases page.  Simply go to the yellow Your Britannica Resources link in the upper right hand corner and find Image Quest.

EveryLibrary Petition

Hello School Library Advocates,

Please sign and share this petition known as the EveryLibrary Petition to reinstate and fund school libraries and school librarians and share this information widely to encourage others to sign.

“This petition calls on school districts to use a portion of federal funding to support school libraries and librarians.  This outreach to school districts is needed because there is no federal funding specifically earmarked just for school libraries.  Instead, the new federal education law (ESSA) simply states that certain funding streams could be used for an array of things, including school libraries and librarians.  It’s important for school districts to hear from as wide an audience possible, that school librarians and librarians are a priority and that funding them helps students succeed.” Beth Yoke, Beth Yoke, CAE Executive Director, Young Adult Library Services Association (ALA)

Here's the full petition:

Fully Implement ESSA School Library Provisions
It is of the utmost urgency that we, the undersigned, implore you to fully fund school libraries and librarians as defined in the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). We are asking that you take immediate steps to recognize that school libraries and librarians are essential to education and understand and enact the following provisions for school libraries and librarians as signed into law by President Barack Obama on December 10th, 2015;

  • ESSA includes “School Librarians” in the definition of “specialized instructional support personnel.” (Title VIII)
  • ESSA includes new provisions that authorize local plans to include a description of how the LEA will assist schools in developing effective school library programs to provide students an opportunity to develop digital literacy skills and improve academic achievement.
  • (Title I)States are now authorized to use funds to support the instructional services provided by effective school library programs.  (Title II, Part A)
  • LEAs are authorized to use funds to support the instructional services provided by effective school library programs. (Title II, Part A)
  • ESSA requires local grants that focus on children in K – 5 to provide high-quality professional development opportunities for specialized instructional support personnel, school librarians, paraprofessionals, and other program staff.  (Title II, Part B, Subpart 2)
  • ESSA requires local grants that focus on children in grades 6 – 12 to provide training for school librarians and other school district personnel to support, develop, administer, and evaluate high-quality comprehensive literacy instruction initiatives. (Title II, Part B, Subpart 2)
  • ESSA authorizes all local grants for K-5 or 6-12 to provide time for literacy staff such as school librarians or specialized instructional support personnel to meet to plan comprehensive literacy instruction. (Title II, Part B, Subpart 2)
  • Funds to develop and enhance effective school library programs are specifically authorized by ESSA. These may include providing professional development for school librarians, books, and up-to-date materials to high need schools. (Title II, Part B, Subpart 2, Section 2226)
  • Libraries are defined as eligible entities with demonstrated expertise in historical methodology or the teaching of American history and civics. (Title II, Part B, Subpart 2, Section 2232)
  •  States are authorized to use funds to assist LEAs with identifying and addressing technology readiness needs, including Internet connectivity and access to school libraries. (Title IV, Part A )
  • States are authorized to use funds to assist LEAs in providing school librarians and media personnel with the knowledge and skills to use technology effectively, including effective integration of technology, to improve instruction and student achievement. (Title IV, Part A )
  • Grants, as in NCLB, can be used to support expanded library service hours. (Title IV, Part B)

(adapted from ALA’s analysis of ESSA)

Sign here:

Please redistribute this information within your networks.

Omaha Public Schools does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, marital status, sexual orientation, disability, age, genetic information, citizenship status, or economic status in its programs, activities and employment and provides equal access to the Boy Scouts and other designated youth groups. The following individual has been designated to address inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies: Superintendent of Schools, 3215 Cuming Street, Omaha, NE 68131 (402-557-2001).

Las Escuelas Públicas de Omaha no discriminan basados en la raza, color, origen nacional, religión, sexo, estado civil, orientación sexual, discapacidad , edad, información genética, estado de ciudadanía, o estado económico, en sus programas, actividades y empleo, y provee acceso equitativo a los “Boy Scouts” y a otros grupos juveniles designados. La siguiente persona ha sido designada para atender estas inquietudes referentes a las pólizas de no discriminación: El Superintendente de las Escuelas, 3215 Cuming Street, Omaha, NE 68131 (402-557-2001).